UW band heads to Ireland St. Patrick's Parade after snowstorm put trip on hold

An East Coast blizzard is impacting at least 90 UW students, as the storm has put their dreams of being in a real Irish St. Patrick's Day Parade on hold. (UPDATE: Since this story aired, the band was booked on new flights and will make it to the event.)

SEATTLE - A blizzard that's blanketing much of the eastern United States threatened to end the dreams of at least 90 University of Washington students hoping of marching in a St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Ireland. But they found out Tuesday morning they'll be able to make it there after all -- just on a lot of different flights

Members of the marching band found out Monday their flights to Dublin, Ireland, were canceled.

“I found out it was canceled probably five minutes before my final, so it was a rollercoaster of emotions,” said Husky Marching Band member Douglas Pham said, who paid $3,000 for the trip.

But after working through the night, their travel agent booked the band members on flights that will get them there in time for Friday's parade, according to the band director. They won't all be traveling together -- they're booked on nine separate flights. And some will have to connect in London, Germany, or Holland.

For the first time, 180 marching band members from UW, Washington State University, and the University of Oregon are supposed to come together to make a trifecta of Pacific Northwest universities traveling to Dublin to perform at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The trip was two years in the making.

“People see you, and they're like, ‘Oh my gosh, look at the Husky Band -- so cool!’ You feel a little bit, I don't want to say famous because we're just band kids, but it's definitely a treat to travel with the band,” said UW third-year Sarah Sanguinet.

For many students, flying to Dublin is going to be their first foray outside North America.

“It’s not every day you get invited to another country,” Pham said.

Athletic Bands Director Brad McDavid says the St. Patrick’s Day Parade is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for students.

Copyright 2017 KING


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