Recognizing the Band

State Representative Chris Campbell (West Lafayette), IPL 500 Festival Parade Co-Chair Mark Eutsler, State Representative Sheila Klinker (Lafayette), State Senator Brian Buchanan (Lebanon) and Purdue University Director of Bands Jay Gephart gathered recently at the statehouse for passage of House Concurrent Resolution 51, which recognizes the Purdue University “All-American” Marching Band’s centennial appearance at the Indy 500 — the year Crawfordsville native Howdy Wilcox won the race driving a car entered by the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Gephart, a Ladoga native and Southmont High School alumnus, is the band’s fifth director. He also coordinates the Parade of Bands, begun in 1922, in which high school bands march around the IMS as part of Indy 500 pre-race entertainment. The AAMB has also appeared in every nationally televised IPL 500 Festival Parade since its inception in 1957, held in downtown Indianapolis the day before the Indy 500.

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