The 69th Columbus Day Parade is happening right now, but one band is missing: The West Point Military Academy's band.
On Saturday, the band posted on its Facebook page, "Unfortunately, due to the government shutdown, we will not be appearing in the Columbus Day Parade on Monday. Keep an eye out for us next year."
The Post spoke to the president of the Columbus Citizens Foundation, Frank Fusaro, "It is very regrettable that for reasons unrelated to their professionalism and commitment to our country that they are unable to perform on Fifth Avenue this Columbus Day." According Fusaro's statement, "West Point’s appearance was going to be underwritten entirely by the citizen’s foundation — which months prior to the government shutdown had agreed to pay for all costs, including transportation, tolls, and meals."
Fusaro added, "The Band is made up of active-duty soldiers who are also virtuosos from across the United States. Historically, and for over two centuries, the Band’s members have been ambassadors of our country." As a Facebook commenter said, "Thank goodness the congressional gym is still open so that they are not put out by this shut down."
Anyway, the West Point band was replaced by the Ohio North University Marching Band.