Keystone Heights JROTC, band, chorus headed to fast lane

School to lead pre-race ceremonies ahead of Daytona truck race

By Natalie Gilstrap For Clay Today
Posted 1/18/23

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS – In 2021, the Daytona International Speedway invited the Keystone Heights Junior Officer Training Corps seniors to present the colors at the Daytona International Speedway after …

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Keystone Heights JROTC, band, chorus headed to fast lane

School to lead pre-race ceremonies ahead of Daytona truck race

Posted

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS – In 2021, the Daytona International Speedway invited the Keystone Heights Junior Officer Training Corps seniors to present the colors at the Daytona International Speedway after the group successfully presented the colors during the Supercross race a year earlier

The group will be returning to the World Center of Racing to present the colors again on Feb. 17 for the NextEra Energy 250 for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.

“It’s always an honor for us to show the patriotic spirit and this is a big venue. For a small town and a small program like Keystone Heights High School, that in itself is an honor,” said Richard Hall, Ret. Lt. Col. U.S. Army and JROTC Senior Army instructor.

There’s opening ceremony for the Friday night Prime Time race will be different than the previous ones. Not only will the school’s JROTC be presenting the colors, the Keystone Heights High Indian Marching Band and the school’s chorus will be participating in the opening ceremony as well.

The JROTC group is partnering with City Manager Lynn Rutkowski to encourage people to buy tickets and participate in the opening ceremony by holding the large American Flag.

“We’re trying to grow this and lay it out more and more. Making it a full community partner type event,” Rutkowski said.

The ceremony will consist of the JROTC seniors presenting the American Flag and the State Flag along with a Captain of the Guard and two Rifle Guards. “The Star-Spangled Banner” will be played by the marching band and “God Bless America” will be sung by the chorus while Keystone Heights residents will participate in holding a large American Flag on the infield.

The JROTC is thankful for all the individuals that have partnered to make this opportunity a community event.

“It takes a lot of support from a lot of different people and a lot of different groups to make something like this happen,” Hall said. “We’re really excited to add the band and the chorus this year and hoping to really get active participation to hold the big flag from the community. We need at least 100 people to make that happen.”

For more information about tickets contact Rutkowski at (904) 796-3416 or email her at Rutkowski@keystoneheights.us.

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