BREAKING NEWS: ICCSD Gives the Go-ahead for Band Trip to Orlando

Emme Perencevich, Copy, opinion, and infographic editor

Whether or not the City High band trip to Orlando, Florida would be canceled or not was up in the air. There were several weeks when the outcome was uncertain.

On March 6, just days before the trip, students were sent a confirmation email that they, in fact, would be going on the trip unless they started to show symptoms of COVID-19 (coronavirus). The decision to go was made in conjunction by health officials, Bob Rogers Travel company, and the ICCSD.

“We feel that with the correct precaution in place, there should be no issue with us traveling to Florida,” band director Mike Kowbel said in an email to students, and their guardians, going on the trip.

Due to the cancellation of school funded international trips, there was a lack of assurance from any of the deciding parties that the trip would go on as planned.

“As someone who was supposed to go on the French trip, I was very, very disappointed when we found out we couldn’t go,” said Nolan Vibhakar ’21. “I think its great that the Orlando trip will still happen because I feel that there has been a massive overreaction to the coronavirus thus far. As long as we are being careful we should be fine. I think this is opportunity doesn’t come very often so its good we get to go.”

This year the trip was supposed to be to Saint Louis, Missouri. However, since last year the Orlando trip was canceled because not enough people signed up to go, they pushed it back to this year.

“I was really scared when I hear [the trip] might get canceled,” said Keith Friestad ’20. “I’ve never been to Disney or Florida at all so this trip was very important to me, especially after last year’s cancelation.”

Kowbel stated that both the theme parks and the travel company are going to be taking extra steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 Each of the charter buses will be equipped with a large bottle of hand sanitizer that students will be required to use every time the board the bus. The travel company will also clean and sanitize the buses every night. The Orlando theme parks have also taken several precautions including the retraining of cleaning staff and implementation of new procedures.

“Students will be expected to wash their hands before and after every meal,” continued Mr. Kowbel. “Additionally, students will be highly encouraged to never share food or drinks with one another.”

Students will be traveling via charter bus to Orlando. The trip will include days spent in both the Walt Disney World Resort and Universal Studios, and a performance with the Universal STARS Performance Program.

“I’m super happy that we get to go,” said Friestad. “I’m looking forward to spending time with my friends and hopefully staying clean.”