By invitation of the Honorable Lord Mayor of Dublin, the Youngsville Area High School Band performed three times during the St. Patrick's Day festivities in Ireland.
On March 16, the band performed at St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin, before marching in the city's St. Patrick's day parade on Sunday, March 17.
The group then went on to compete at the Limerick International Marching Band Competition, where they won an award for most entertaining performance.
Members of the Youngsville Eagles Marching Band parade through downtown Dublin on St. Patrick’s Day.
The Youngsville Eagles Marching Band at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin
"This was a big accomplishment for our little school," band instructor Cynthia Scheid said.
Band members agreed, going on to describe the unique opportunity.
"It was so big and beautiful in there," Kylie Edminsten said of St. Patrick's Cathedral. "The sound was amazing."
"It was a small crowd we played for, but the energy...," Austin Miller noted. "It was amazing."
"It was all very humbling in all honesty," Angela Renninger added.
According to the students, the performance went so well, they received a standing ovation.
The parade, students said, was also an overwhelming experience.
"I was amazed," Andrew Tyers said. "It was just as much Ireland day than just St. Patrick's Day."
"It was crazy the amount of people that were there and the adrenaline rush," Paige Reilly recalled.
Ashley Morris added, "The reaction of the crowd was absolutely amazing. We've never had anything like that."
Although the parade route was long, students didn't said they didn't mind.
"The parade was three-and-a-half miles around there, at least," Alex Sanford noted. "With all the energy, it didn't even feel that bad."
"The energy from the crowd was my drive to keep going," Anthony Shipani added.
"Every time we started playing the crowd would go wild," Dustin McCellan agreed. "It was just really exciting and motivating to keep you going."
Students went on to compete at Limerick on Monday, wrapping up a marathon of performances and netting their award.
Five awards were given at Limerick total. Youngsville took one but, according to band members, they were told that was only because the rules prevented a single band from winning more than one.
"After the awards ceremony, sitting with all those different bands and getting most entertaining was amazing," Nick Coan said.
"When we got called for most entertaining," Dalton Edminsten recalled. "We got the most cheers for it."
According to Savannah Maze, "When we were waiting to start a bunch of people kept coming up wanting their picture taken with us."
"I don't think they've ever had their picture taken so much," Shipe posited.
Students also got a chance to do some sight seeing on the emerald isle visiting Blarney Castle and the Cliffs of Moher, amongst other sights.
"It was just an amazing experience," McClellan noted. "I would gladly go back any time."
Students didn't forget how they got there, they made a special point of thanking the community for their support of the trip, which was paid for through community fundraising.