MS Lions All-State Band wins 5th straight championship

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, July 5, 2017

In an international competition that drew an estimated 10,000 Lions Clubs International band members from 125 countries, the Mississippi Lions All-State Band finished on top, bringing back its fifth consecutive championship to the Magnolia State.
The Lions Clubs International Parade of Nations celebrated its 100th anniversary in Chicago this past weekend. Every year, countries from across the globe, and many different states within the U.S., compete in the Parade of Nations marching band competition, in which the Mississippi Lions All-State Band has brought home the championship title 33 out of the total 100 years of the competition’s existence; 14 of those titles were won in the past two decades.
“These musicians are the cream of the crop and not only work hard, but enjoy every second of having the opportunity to play with other gifted kids their age who are just as good,” MS Lions All-State Band Director Jeff Cannon said.
The Mississippi Lions All-State Band started their recent five-year winning streak in the Parade of Nations in Hamburg, Germany in 2013, then won in Toronto, Ontario Canada in 2014, followed by a victory in Honolulu, Hawaii in 2015 and also won in last year’s competition held in Fukuoka, Japan, according to the Lions Clubs International website.
This year, the band won in Chicago where, according to the Lions Clubs website, the marching band competition began back in 1917.
“We never thought or talked about winning the competition. We are just here to buy into the different cultures, get exposure and grow as musicians,” Cannon said.
The late Dr. James L. Schrock, a Picayune native, began the legacy of the MS Lions Clubs International in the early 1950s and was later inducted into the MS Lions Club International Hall of Fame in May of 2005 for his service on the All-State Lions Band committee and his contributions to the early success of the band, according to his obituary.
Next year, the Lions Clubs International Parade of Nations will be held in Las Vegas from June 29 through July 3.

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