Ohio State School for the Blind Marching Band Selected to represent OHIO in the 2015 National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, D.C.

The National Memorial Day Parade Selection Committee has accepted the OHIO STATE SCHOOL FOR THE BLIND MARCHING BAND as an official representative of the State of OHIO in the 2015 National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, D.C. This acceptance is a result of the very high recommendations of their band program.

The parade on Constitution Avenue between 7th and 17th streets passes alongside the National Mall, the Washington Monument and the White House in a magnificent salute to America’s Veterans and in honor of those who died in defense of our country. It is featured on local, national and international television.

The parade consists of select marching bands and veteran units from each of the 50 states honoring World War I, War World II, The Korean and Vietnam Conflicts, Desert Storm, and the liberation of Grenada, Panama, Iraq and Afghanistan. Included with the many veterans in the parade are tributes to earlier eras of American military history, including re-enactor units representing the American Revolution, War of 1812, Civil War and Spanish-American War along with fife and drum corps and bagpipers. Large patriotic floats and helium filled balloons are also part of the procession. More than 10,000 participants take part in the parade each year.

August 2014 marks the 10th year for the Ohio State School for the Blind Marching Band! The band is working to raise $30,000 to cover the cost of the trip.

Donations in the form of checks made out to “OSSB PTSF” with “music department” in the subject line can be mailed to

Jim Peterfish
OSSB PTSF Treasurer
5220 N. High Street
Columbus, OH 43214

To donate instruments contact Director Yolanda Johnson @ yjohnson@osdb.oh.gov or via phone @ 614-468-8855.

The OSSB Marching Band is the only blind marching band in the world and its members come from all over the state of Ohio. The nationally recognized band under the leadership of Director Yolanda Johnson, Drill Writer Jeff Schneider, and assisted by founder Carol Agler represented the state of Ohio in the National Memorial Day parade. On September 21, 2014 they joined The Ohio State University Marching Band in a “Double Ohio” drill during halftime. OSUMB performed Script Ohio, while OSSBMB performed their signature drill in which they spelled out “Ohio” in Braille..

OSSBMB was awarded the prestigious “Creative Use of Braille” award by the American Printing House for the Blind (AMP) in October, 2013, for the use of Braille in their signature drill. The band marched in the Jan. 1, 2010 Tournament of Roses Parade, and was awarded the prestigious National Citation by Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity for their many achievements and for opening the eyes of their community by creating new standards of excellence for persons with disabilities.

Signature Drill: Script Braille “Ohio”

OSSB Marching Band Schedule 2014-2015

Yolanda Johnson, Director;
Jeffrey Schneider, Drill Writer, Field Director

Updated April 15, 2015

Thursday, April 16 5:30-7:30 p.m. Marching Band Practice to prepare for the Memorial Day Parade.

Thursday, April 23 6:00-7:00 p.m. Meeting for Marching Assistants to discuss National Memorial Day Parade trip.

Thursday, April 30 5:30-7:30 p.m. Marching Band Practice to prepare for the Memorial Day Parade.

Sunday, May 3 3:00 p.m. OSSBMB will perform their halftime show at a carnival at the Ohio School for the Deaf. The carnival is from noon-4:00 p.m. OSSBMB will be in full uniform. Marching Assistants Needed! OSSBMB families and students are invited! There will be carnival rides and games and food trucks. OSSBMB students need to arrive by 1:45 if possible.

Monday, May 4 Noon-1:00 p.m.; Marching Band performs for Adaptive Physical Education Conference here at OSSB.

Tuesday, May 21 6:30 p.m. Music Awards Night for all band/choir members (non-OSSBMB musicians, grade 6 and up, as well) and their parents in the Multipurpose Room.

Thursday, May 14 1:00 p.m. Spring Recital, OSSB Auditorium. The public is invited.

Thursday, May 14 6:30 p.m. Spring Concert, OSSB Auditorium. The public is invited.

Friday, May 22 OSSBMB departs for Washington, D.C. at 3:00 a.m.

Monday, May 25 2:00 p.m. Ohio State School for the Blind Marching Band will proudly represent the Great State of Ohio, and demonstrate the abilities of those with disabilities when they march in the National Memorial Day Parade, Washington D.C. Return time Tuesday, May 26 at 1:00 a.m.

Sunday, August 2, 4:00 p.m. - Friday, August 7, 4:00 p.m. Band Camp 2015 for all members of the 2015 OSSBMB


ON THE WEB:  * marks “Highly Recommended Videos”

*September 21, 2013—OSSBMB spells “Ohio” in Braille while THE Ohio State University Marching Band performs Script “Ohio.” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMbB8CEyHHc  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-rCyEyN9W0   Related article and video in Columbus Dispatch http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/life_and_entertainment/2013/09/21/heartfelt-script.html  “Gametime” Interview http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=criKz8D48sI

*October 13, 2012—OSSBMB at Ohio Stadium in The Buckeye Invitational as the feature band before The Ohio State University Marching Band performed their half-time show. OSSB Marching Band in The Buckeye Invitational

*Column “Mom, I Can Do This!” and Video “Guided by Music” by Rick Reilly by ESPN OSSB Marching Band on ESPN

*Today.com video by Kyle Miller OSSB Marching Band on MSN Today.com

*Seattle Times Video “Blind Marching Band Leads Parade” re: July 5, 2011 Lions Club International Parade of Nations OSSB Marching Band on Seattle Times

*Script Braille “Ohio” as well as the first part of the 2009 half-time show performed at Bandfest in Pasadena:  OSSB Marching Band at Bandfest Part 1 and part 2 of that video: OSSB Marching Band at Bandfest Part 2

Marching.com article about the Rose Parade experience OSSB Marching Band at the Rose Parade

*KABC Los Angeles Video and article: OSSB Marching Band on KABC Los Angeles

National Education Association article:  OSSB on NEA.org

American Profile Magazine article Dec. 26, 2009 OSSB Marching Band on American Profile Magazine.com  Search site for “America’s Only Blind Marching Band”

Columbus Dispatch article Dec. 27, 2009 OSSB Marching Band on Dispatch.com

Ohio Congressional Record—Recognition  OSSB Marching Band in the Ohio Congressional Record

Short North Gazette article Dec. 2009 OSSB Marching Band on ShortNorth.com

*The following link will take you to the CBS story that aired on November 7, 2008 OSSB Marching Band on CBSNews.com

The coverage by Steve Wainfort of Channel 4 is viewed at OSSB Marching Band on NBC4i.com

KTLA-TV Los Angeles news article quoting Linda Simon-Mietus paper about OSSBMB and its history. OSSB Marching Band on KTLA.com

Columbus Dispatch article OSSB Marching Band on Dispatch.com

Yolanda Johnson
OSSB Music Director
OSSBMB Director
yjohnson@ossb.oh.gov
614-468-8855 music room

OSSB Marching Panthers Group Picture