NEW YORK CITY, N.Y. -- Thursday was a long and tiring day for trumpet player and Allendale Columbia School Sophomore John Phillips, but an experience of a lifetime.

Phillips was the first student from Monroe County to ever perform in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade with the Great American High School Marching Band.

He said it all started overnight. The group left the hotel just before 2 a.m., got in some practices, and then waited in the lineup. 

He said he was nervous at first, but the crowd gave them an adrenaline rush.

"Keeping in step with other people was kind of hard, but it was still kind of cool to see all the people cheering,” Phillips, who has never marched before, said. “Once we performed in Herald Square it was pretty fun. It was definitely an experience.

Phillips spent Thanksgiving in New York with his new friends from around the country who also took part in the parade.  He said he can march again next year, if he pays the fees.  He will be back in Rochester Sunday.