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Members of the Pride of DeSoto Central Marching Band rehearse ahead of the band’s weekend trip to Indianapolis, Indiana. The band is the first and only Mississippi band to take part in the Indianapolis 500 parade ahead of the annual race event.  

You can look for a bit of DeSoto County in the festivities surrounding one of the most prestigious automobile races in the world this Memorial Day weekend. 

The Indianapolis 500, also known as the Indy 500 and run at the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway, aka “the Brickyard,” will be run this Sunday.

Helping to celebrate the 110 years of the Indy 500 this weekend will be the Pride of DeSoto Central Marching Band, under the direction of Dennis Cox.

The DeSoto Central band will travel to Indiana Friday for the Indy 500 Parade, considered one of the nation’s largest parades, and a parade that will take place on Saturday, May 25. The parade will begin 10:45 a.m. Central time.

Cox said the DeSoto Central band will be the only organization from Mississippi ever to take part in the parade, which is to be nationally broadcast on the NBC Sports Network.

“The Pride will be featured in the parade along with 14 other bands,” Cox said.

About 300,000 residents will line the streets of downtown Indianapolis for the parade, which will carry the theme of "Your tradition is waiting in our own backyard."

Along with the parade, the band will also be involved in the Indy 500’s opening ceremonies on Sunday, May 26 at 11 a.m. Central time.

The group’s tour will also include a trip after the parade to the Kalahari Resort and Cedar Point Theme Park in Sandusky, Ohio, before heading back home on Wednesday.

Bob Bakken is Managing Editor for the DeSoto Times-Tribune.

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