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  • Harvest of Harmony
    Parade & Field Competition
    Saturday, October 7, 2023

    Sponsored by


    Field Competition Sponsor



    Calling all maestros, virtuosos, and music enthusiasts! Whether you're a fan of timeless symphonies, foot-tapping jazz, soul-stirring country melodies, electric rock anthems, or catchy pop hits, this parade will fill the streets with sounds of the centuries!
    The Harvest of Harmony Committee is thrilled to announce the theme of this year's parade: "Celebration of Sound"!
    We're turning up the volume to embrace the heart and soul of Harvest of Harmony — the music! This year, we invite all participants and spectators to join us in a joyous celebration of the evolution of music, from its classical roots to the energetic beats of today's hits.
    To truly honor the "Celebration of Sound," join the festivities by donning your favorite musical attire or dressing up as your beloved music icons. Let's transform the streets of downtown Grand Island into a symphony of vibrant colors and dazzling apparel!
    This year’s parade will be led by Grand Marshal Diane Miller, whose career started in education. She taught in seven different schools in the Central Nebraska area, while spending many of her summers working with Grand Island Parks & Recreation as a lifeguard and water safety instructor. Miller later transitioned from working in the classroom to the role of Facility Manager for Grand Island’s Island Oasis when it opened in 1993. She remained in that position for 30 years and retired in 2022, but not before earning the title of ‘Waterpark Queen’ from her coworkers.
    Mark your calendars for Saturday, October 7th, and spread the word: the "Celebration of Sound" is just around the corner!


  • 81st Harvest of Harmony Parade Sponsor – Century 21 Realty

    Owner Zachary Zoul in front of Century 21 Realty sign

    The Harvest of Harmony Parade and Field Competitions are a fall tradition that Nebraskans can look forward to each year. Thanks to community supporters like Century 21 Realty, the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce can keep this tradition going year after year.

    Century 21 Realty is a multifaceted real estate brokerage that focuses on helping clients buy and sell real estate with a specialization in residential real estate. Zachary Zoul, owner of Century 21 Realty, states that Century 21 is a boutique real estate office with personalized service to help clients reach their real estate goals.  
    “We are committed to assisting clients achieve their objectives of selling their home or finding a new home,” said Zoul. “I believe we differentiate ourselves from many others in the business by providing a very personalized service.”
    With their downtown location, Century 21 Realty has a unique position. “We’ve invested heavily in the downtown location, and we have the distinction of being located in one of the most historic landmark buildings in the community,” said Zoul.
    Zoul believes that Century 21 Realty is a widely recognized brand with a long tradition of serving the Grand Island community. “The Harvest of Harmony event and parade in particular really speaks to a great tradition in Grand Island,” Zoul said. “We are very proud of our tradition of service, and we like to support a tradition in the community. Equally important is that Harvest of Harmony really reaches out to all of central Nebraska and beyond, which is also our service area. By supporting the Harvest of Harmony Parade, we can give back to the community in some small measure.”
    As a parade sponsor, Century 21 Realty has a special perspective of the Harvest of Harmony Parade. “Having been in the parade, I have the perspective not of viewing the parade but of viewing the reaction of people along the parade route,” remarked Zoul. “Watching the reaction of children in particular but, in a way, children of all ages. They just really love the parade. The fact that people line up hours in advance to get a front row seat. It’s just very exciting,” Zoul said. “[Harvest of Harmony] exemplifies the sense of community spirit and values that are so important to Nebraskans.”

    Century 21 Realty Open House from 9am-1pm

    Spectators can claim their front row seat Saturday, October 7th, to enjoy a morning of music and community celebration at the 81st Harvest of Harmony. Century 21 Realty will be having an Open House during and after the parade from 9am-1pm at their downtown location. Attendees can look forward to a BBQ food truck and enjoying some refreshments as well as an opportunity to tour the Century 21 Realty building. 


  • The History of Harvest of Harmony

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    The parade's roots start back in 1938 when Chamber members decided to organize an event to promote goodwill among the area small towns. That first parade, initially named the Central Nebraska Music Festival, was a rousing success with eight bands and 13 floats. An estimated 10,000 people were watching from the streets of Grand Island. 


    Just as the event was getting started, World War II began. The parade ceased in 1942, 1943, 1944 and 1945, due to gas rationing. Once the war ended, the parade resumed in 1946 with a new name, Harvest of Harmony, and added the Miss Harvest of Harmony Pageant.  


    Over the years, Harvest of Harmony has grown into one of Nebraska's largest events. The culmination of the parade's popularity was evident in 1996 as Harvest of Harmony broke an existing record and claimed a spot in the Guinness Book of Records as "highest number of bands marching in a parade" with 130 bands.


    As for those original eight bands that began in 1938… they've been back each and every year.



    The Harvest of Harmony is coordinated by the Grand Island Area Chamber of Commerce with the help of the Harvest of Harmony committee. Each year, the committee meets monthly starting in March to begin planning for the parade.

    The Harvest of Harmony committee selects a theme meant to represent Grand Island and the current development taking place in the community.

    A grand marshal (or more than one) is also selected by the committee, sometimes in relation to the selected theme.







    1963 —  When You Wish Upon a Star     2002 —  Honoring Everyday Heroes
    1974 —  Nebraskaland...Visions of Tomorrow 2003 —  Thanks for the Memories, 10/11
    1975 —  Say It With Music 2004 —  ACTS OF KINDNESS---“Serving Others in the Heartland”
    1978 —  A Tribute to Big Brass Bands and Barnam & Bailey 2005 —  Uniquely Nebraskan – Celebrating People, Places & Events
    1979 —  It’s a Small, Small World 2006 —  Mardi Gras – “Isle de Grande” -65th year
    1980 —  United We Can, Together We Stand 2007 —  Celebration of 150 years of Hall County Settlement “Reflecting Back... Looking Forward”
    1981 —  Reflection of the Golden Years 2008 —  Festivals, Family and Fun!
    1982 —  The All AmericaCity 2009 —  A World of Harmony and Happiness
    1983 —  Shine on Harvest Moon-Salute to Ag 2010 —  Harvest of Pride- Saluting Nebraska’s Men, Women, and Families of the Armed Services
    1984 —  Music-The International Voice 2011 —  Celebrating Agriculture in the Heartland
    1985 —  Merry Go Rounds and Clowns 2012 —  Soaring through the Heartland –Choppers, Planes and Cranes
    1986 —  Nebraska, We’ve Got the Spirit 2013 —  Nebraska’s Youth – Our Shining Stars
    1987 —  Our Friends, the Animals 2014 —  From Pages to Parade… Making Characters Come Alive
    1988 —  Looking Up, Feeling Great, Celebrate ‘88 2015 —  Superhero Adventures…What’s Your Superpower?
    1989 —  We the People 2016 —  Our Diamond Jubilee – An Illustrious Past and A Bright Future
    1990 —  A Melody to Remember 2017 —  Nebraska! Let’s Celebrate 150 Years!
    1991 —  50 Years of Harmony 2018 —  There’s No Place Like Space
    1992 —  125 Ways to Love Nebraska 2019 —  Building Dreams, Friendships and Memories!
    1993 —  Ethnic Cultures on Parade 2020 —  **No parade held due to the COVID-19 Pandemic
    1994 —  Nebraska’s Youth, the Future 2021 —  We Are All Superheroes
    1995 —  Freedom on Parade 2022 —  Marching through the Decades
    1996 —  The Spirit of Grand Island
    1997 —  Masquerade on Parade
    1998 —  Big Red Marches On
    1999 —  A Parade of Years Past
    2000 —  A Tour of the Heartland
    2001 —  Hobbies...the Spice of Life




    The Harvest of Harmony kicks off with the Alumni Band. Jack Moore, who owned a music shop in town, founded the Alumni Band.

    Judi Nelson now leads the Alumni Band and has done so for the past 26 years. The number of participants varies from 20 to 40 members, and they practice together for three Sunday nights before the parade.

    As a tradition, the Alumni Band is always the first band to march in the parade.







    The stars of the Harvest of Harmony parade are other bands from high schools all across Nebraska that travel to Grand Island to participate on the first Saturday in October.

    Harvest of Harmony is a Nebraska State Athletic Association sanctioned parade and field competition.

    Many high school bands view the Harvest of Harmony as a great practice for their state competitions or just a fun experience to perform in front of thousands of cheering spectators.

    Each year, the Harvest of Harmony Committee selects judges for the field and parade competition.





    Area communities, businesses, clubs, service organizations and individuals can participate by entering a decorated float relating to the parade theme. These groups have the option between three different floats: walking units, a single vehicle or towed decorated floats.

    On Friday before the parade, judges view the participating floats and award prizes in the civic, school, children, and business categories. An additional award includes the Marshal's Choice.






    Get updates about the Harvest of Harmony parade, right in your inbox!
    Click here to sign up for the Harvest of Harmony mailing list.



    For many years, the Harvest of Harmony Parade has been broadcast live by local television
    stations. This has been a unique and added bonus for participating bands, floats, and dignitaries.
    Unfortunately, we were advised in 2021 by NTV that they are not able to broadcast the
    Parade due to copyright and synchronization laws that have been brought to the forefront. 

    The Harvest of Harmony committee will continue to explore other options that allow
    individuals from across the state, country, and world to view the parade 'live.'