GRAMBLING, La. (AP) _ The Grambling State University Tiger Marching Band will represent Louisiana in January at the parade honoring the inauguration of President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.
The parade is set for Jan. 21 in Washington.
“We are just so happy and excited to have this opportunity,” said GSU band director Larry Pannell. “It’s just an honor being bestowed upon us.”
The News-Star reports (http://tnsne.ws/XUbX6v) the Grambling band marched in parades for the inaugural parades of presidents Jimmy Carter and George W. Bush in addition to the 2009 inaugural of Obama.
Pannell said performing for Obama carries special significance for the historically black university.
“To have a president of color and to go back and play for him a second time says something to historically black colleges and universities,” Pannell said.
Participants in the parade will follow the traditional route down Pennsylvania Avenue from Fourth Street past the White House.
Obama and Biden, along with their families, will watch the parade from a reviewing stand across from Lafayette Park.
Participants in the parade are responsible for paying their own expenses.
Grambling State President Frank Pogue said the university will provide some assistance to band members, including contacting alumni for aid donations.
“Some of our students may need assistance, and we’ll be planning to find ways to assist them, including calling on others to help,” he said. “They’ll be representing our university and our state,” Pogue said.