Vikingland Band Festival set for SundayAlexandria’s annual Vikingland Band Festival parade is set to take place this Sunday, June 27.
Alexandria’s annual Vikingland Band Festival parade is set to take place this Sunday, June 27.
The 26th annual parade will begin at 1:30 p.m. and will march south on Broadway from 4th Avenue to 15th Avenue.
The grand marshals for this year are Jerry and Margaret VanKempen of Alexandria.
This year’s parade will feature 22 high school marching bands, including Alexandria’s own Jefferson High School Marching Band.
In addition, there will be a special appearance by the Notteroy Marching Band from Norway. They are this year’s honor band.
The Notteroy Marching Band has traveled to Alexandria to celebrate the band’s 60th anniversary and to share a cross-cultural experience with American band students.
The band has won the Norwegian National Championship for street marching two of the past three years.
This marks the third time a Norwegian band has marched in the Vikingland Band Festival.
Since the festival’s beginning in 1985, 84 different bands have competed.
Three bands have appeared in every parade – Bertha-Hewitt, Long Prairie and Alexandria.
Including 2009 appearances, these bands have appeared at least 15 times: Fergus Falls (22), Litchfield (22), Park Center (21), Waconia (21), Henry Sibley (20), Mankato Lancers (20), Winona Cotter (20), St. Cloud All-City (19), Albert Lea (16), and Osseo (16).
The Alexandria Police Department reminds everyone that there will be no parking on Broadway during the band festival. Any vehicles not moved by 12:30 p.m. will be towed to make way for the parade.
The DVD recording area will be at 1022 Broadway so parade-goers are asked to refrain from placing chairs in that location, as they will be moved to make room for the snorkel truck and other equipment.
This year, there are four prime viewing and performance locations:
•Judging takes place near the intersection of 6th Avenue and Broadway. Bleacher seating is for sale at the 6th Avenue location facing the judging platform.
•A “people’s choice” voting area is near the intersection of 8th Avenue and Broadway. Bleacher seating is for sale at the 8th Avenue location near Legion Park.
•The DVD cameras and second “people’s choice” voting area are near the intersection of 11th Avenue and Broadway.
•A final performance area is near the intersection of 14th Avenue and Broadway. This zone ends where all the drum majors gather to salute their competitors.
Festival attendees should use care when placing their chairs to hold their spots, advised Vikingland Band Festival organizers.
Drivers should also use special caution near the intersections of 6th and 8th Avenues as bleacher seating will be set up in those intersections early Sunday morning.
For more information about the festival, contact LuWanna Johnson at the Alexandria Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce at (320) 763-3161.