DETROIT -

One of Detroit’s own high school bands is heading to the nation’s capital for the inauguration.

Cass Tech’s high school marching band left for Washington D.C. Thursday evening.

“It’s like I can’t believe this day is here,” said junior Keire Wellington, who is a twirler.

“We’ve done lots of things, but nothing compares to this, this is real big,” said band member Orlando Adams, Jr.

Monday is President Barack Obama’s inauguration and the students will perform at a festival leading up to the historic swearing-in.

“Oh I’m really excited. I couldn’t even sleep last night,” said trumpet and flute player Khalyl Saul.

Saul is one of 57 students and seven adults taking the trip, an opportunity for some that almost fell through. Money was a concern until major donors chipped in.

“I’m really grateful that it did come through. If it wasn’t for them, a lot of the students that are able to go wouldn’t have been able to go,” said Saul.

“I’m happy for him, excited for him,” said Saul’s father Kaseem.

“They’ll never forget this for the rest of their lives, they’ll tell their kids about this, it’ll be so great,” said band director Sharon Allen.

The group rose over $75,000 for the trip. They received $10,000 dollars from the JUST Foundation, which helps distressed kids and families and the General Motors Foundation donated $25,000.

The marching band will return Wednesday morning.