HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) — Hampton University’s marching band “The Marching Force” was the first from a Historically Black College or University (HBCU) to be in the Rome New Year’s Parade. 

The parade celebrated life, cultural diversity and international goodwill. It is in conjunction with the World Day of Peace, where the parade proceeds along the Via della Conciliazione and culminates in St. Peter’s Square, Hampton University officials say.

A post on the band’s Facebook page reported the band landed in Rome just before 7 a.m. EST Tuesday.

A press release from the university said while in Italy, the band will also get the opportunity to visit and perform in other local communities.

The 2020 Rome New’s Day Parade started at 11 a.m. Rome time. That is 5 a.m. EST.