Members of the Downingtown High School Blue and Gold Marching Band arrived in Los Angeles at 3 a.m. Wednesday exhausted but overjoyed.
Their yearlong plan to march in the Rose Parade on New Year's Day had been threatened by a blizzard, but was saved in the end.
"It feels so good to have finally gotten out here," said Alex D'Ginto, 16, who plays clarinet. "Everything has worked out, and we're so excited."
On Tuesday, it seemed the award-winning band might not march in the parade.
Two flights scheduled to take about half the 350-member band to Los Angeles early Tuesday had been canceled by Continental Airlines because of the blizzard earlier this week.
Band officials - with help from local, state, and federal officials - began searching for alternative transportation, and by midday Tuesday, Continental had added a special flight to accommodate the stranded band members.
The plane took off from Newark Liberty International Airport about 9 p.m. Approximately 10 parents and chaperones who weren't able to fly out on Tuesday were expected to arrive by late Wednesday.
After landing in L.A., the students slept for about three hours before a morning tour of the Grammy Museum. They were scheduled to march in a band fest Wednesday afternoon at Pasadena City College. The event was moved inside because of rain.
"It's raining right now, but they said the weather would be better later this week," said Jeremy Sinclair, 16, who plays baritone horn.
But for him, the weather was secondary.
"It's always been a dream of mine to come to California," he said, "and it's amazing."