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Drummer part of Macy's parade
Central student one of 250 in band
Drum WEB
Nick Tucker, playing the snare drum outside Forsyth Central High, will perform in todays Macys Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. - photo by Autumn Vetter

If you’re watching

Tune in to the 85th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade from 9 a.m. to noon today on NBC.

While watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is a tradition for many, it will take on special meaning this year for one local family.

Nick Tucker, a junior at Forsyth Central High School, has been selected for the Macy’s Great American Marching Band.

The band is comprised of some 250 student musicians, color guard members and dancers from all 50 states.

They will perform this morning under the direction of Auburn University’s Richard Good and Ohio State University’s Jon Woods.

Tucker plays snare drum in the Central Flash of Crimson Marching Band.

His mom, Kim Morrow, said he became interested in the Great American Marching Band last Thanksgiving.

“We were just watching the parade and he said that was something he would like to do,” Morrow said. “He went online and looked up all the audition information on his own.”

Tom Tucker, no relation, serves as the assistant band director and percussion leader at Central.

He said everyone in the band is “very proud” of Nick Tucker.

“I’m pretty sure he’s the first student we’ve ever had go to the Macy’s Parade,” Tom Tucker said. “Macy’s is very particular about their parade.

“Even if you want to send your entire band, it’s a very rigorous audition process. So for Nick to take the initiative to do this on his own, we’re really proud of him.”

As part of the audition process, Nick Tucker said he had to fill out an application and submit a video of himself playing the snare drum.

The trip will be his fourth to the New York City, but the first without his parents.

“It’s a little scary,” he said.

But he wasn’t going to have much time to worry. Several rehearsals were scheduled early in week, as well as a lot of sightseeing.

“We’ll do a lot of tourist things, like go to Ground Zero, Broadway, Times Square and Rockefeller Center,” he said.

He’s sharing a room with three other students from other parts of the country.

“When I got the room list, I thought I was in the Army for a second,” he joked. “I’ll be staying with two guys from Pennsylvania and one from Illinois.”

He said he’s most looking forward to talking to other drummers from around the country.

“It’ll be cool to hear about how they do things and the different traditions at different schools,” he said.

His mom said while the family won’t be attending the parade in New York, they will be tuned to the event on TV.

“We’ll either be with family in South Carolina or at a friend’s house,” she said. “We’re so proud of him. I’ve been telling everybody for the past few weeks, ‘My son’s going to be in the Macy’s parade.’”