It’s parade day!
Firetrucks and police cars with lights blazing and horns blowing. The mayor riding in a classic sports car. Middle school marching bands. 4-H clubs with an array of farm animals. Dance teams. Home town royalty and court. Candy tossed from floats. Old fashioned fun for all.
The longest parade in the world is the Hanover Schützenfest. This yearly procession is a little over 7 miles long with over 12,000 folks participating from all over the globe. They also boast over 100 bands and 70 floats and carriages.
The San Carlos Hometown Days parade isn’t quite as big, but they pack a lot fun and community spirit into one festive morning through the center of town. We are lucky enough to participate because Mia dances at the Small Fry Dance Club.
Earlier that morning, the girls and I decorated the wagon. Purple mylar ruffled lightly in the breeze. Sparkly flower stickers were attached around the border.
We met early at City Hall park, a bubbly bunch of little girls ready to walk the parade route. Red ribbons were given out to each participant. Our ticket into the fun.
As the parade approached, the girl excitedly sat on the curb waiting for our spot in line. We counted the armbands until we reached 26. We took our place in the procession.
Ava and Mia ran out front. Dancing. Twirling. Skipping. Waving to the crowd. Family after family waved back and clapped. Ava should have been the Grand Marshall , she loved leading the way.
Hometown parades are also full of friends. We saw several families we knew. Mia saw her friend Maddy from school. They ran towards each other for a hug.
Parades are special. They keep us grounded in the importance of community. They remind us why we love marching bands, floats, and baton twirling.
As our walk came to an end, Ava blew kisses to the crowd and gave a bow.
As for me, I will always love a parade and look forward to the next one.