NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. — A River Ridge High School student performed in front of millions during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and it is her work ethic and try-it-all attitude that is a big reason for the opportunity.

Brecklynn Bashant had a tryout earlier in the year, unlike any other.

What You Need To Know

  • Brecklynn Bashant tried out and won a spot on Macy's Great American Marching Band

  • Bashant performed in this year's Macy's Thanksgiving Parade

  • She keeps a busy schedule with extracurricular activities which include band, private voice and instrument lessons, and figure skating

Her successful audition landed her in New York City this week for one of America’s biggest celebrations: the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade.

Bashant has been playing the clarinet for less than three years.

In that brief time, she has become good at it. So good, in fact, Macy’s invited Bashant to be part of the Macy’s Great American Marching Band.

The band is made up of 185 of the best high school performers from across the county.

Bashant was incredibly surprised about the good news earlier this year.

“I don’t have words for it,” she said. “I remember my mom walking into my room like, ‘You got to the Macy’s Parade,’” Bashant said. “I was like, ‘What!?!’”

Bashant, a sophomore at River Ridge High School in Pasco County, is a do-it-all teenager.

She is part of the marching band at school. She also takes private lessons for various instruments and her voice. But that is not all. She is into figure skating as well.

That is the kind of schedule Bashant is keeping up.

“It’s a lot to manage,” she said. “But usually I do some homeschool, so I have enough time to leave school early, get to the rink and I have enough time to go band practices and rehearse my music on my own time.”

She has her No. 1 fan watching and motivating her. Bashant’s mother, Cristina Sparacino, is happy with what her daughter has accomplished.

“I’m so proud of her because she’s a straight-A student,” Sparacino said. “She’s a very kind person, which matters more than anything to me. I tell her the most important thing you can do is just be yourself, be nice to people and try to do as many experiences as possible and do it all the way.

“And if you fail, you’re going to learn from it.”

Bashant strongly recommends other young people, especially girls, to try new things.

“I say it’s possible,” she said of her multiple activities. “It does take work, and it takes dedication to want to push to do all these things.”