A group of SouthShore-area residents’ dreams are coming true in November. The Second Time Arounders, an all-adult marching band, is performing at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade after making at stop at Riverview High School to perform an exhibition at the Florida Marching Band Regional Championships.
The group, made up of more than 350 musicians, majorettes, dancers, rifles and flag team members ages 18 to 85 from around the Tampa Bay area, only has one requirement; that the members have participated in a marching band previously.
“It could have been high school, college, military or a drum corps,” said member and majorette Cathy Kersten.
Over the last 37 years, the Second Time Arounders have been marching locally and around the country with typically five to seven performances a season.
The group, which usually practices once a week, was created in St. Petersburg when Director Bill Findeisen and a group of friends thought it would be fun to participate in the parade associated with the Festival of States.
“A group of high school and middle school band directors got together and dreamed up the idea that they should form an adult group of music enthusiasts that might want to march again, one more time,” said Kersten. “And so it evolved.”
According to Kersten, only eight or nine bands pass the rigorous application process to perform during the Macy’s Parade, and the costs for the trip are high.
“We have fundraisers available for band members to participate in to help with their funds,” said Kersten, who has been a member of the group for eight years. “Many members have been working concessions at the Rays and Bucs games and we also hold a Chili Cook-Off and Oktoberfest as local fundraisers.”
Residents interested in watching the group perform before the parade should mark their calendars for Saturday, November 16, which is when the Second Time Arounders will participate in the Florida Marching Band Regional Championships at Riverview High School.
“What a treat for all involved,” said Kersten. “The kids get to see that they can still be involved in band, no matter what age, and the Rounders get to perform for a home crowd of kids and band supporters as a great send off to Macy’s.”
For more information, visit www.secondtimearounders.org.