Sunday, July 5, 2009

Our Parade -- The Highlight of the Year

We live in a small town. It's really not that small....but it has many small-town characteristics. The biggest event of the year is the July 4th parade. It's the biggest parade around -- about two miles long and lasts about two hours. People actually set chairs out days in advance to get primo viewing spots (it's funny to drive down the street lined with empty lawn chairs). The police have to block an exit from the interstate and all access to the center of town.

The day starts with a 2 mile road race along the parade route. And there are (what seem to be) a bazillion entrants. Maybe it's the $1000 prize for any winner breaking the course record -- but more likely just the atmosphere. The parade itself kicks off promptly at 10am. There are the usual police, fire, and emergency vehicles (well, last year there was a minor scandal when the fire department didn't play). Marching bands. Bands riding on floats. Cub scouts with super soaker water guns (many onlookers are also armed and squirt back). Antique cars. Politicians. This year we had salsa dancers from a local restaurant. I couldn't have walked 2 yards in those shoes, never mind 2 miles. I had two favorite entries.
  • The bottle and can drive float -- bedecked with redeemable bottles and cans with three young men playing trash cans. They were really good (proceeds from the bottle and can drive go to the music society).
  • The town dog association truck -- yes, those really are stuffed toy dogs decorating the truck. I have no idea what the point was/is.

The weather was perfect, sunny and not too hot. A welcome change from our wet and chilly June. Maybe summer is finally here.

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