The parade itself is, of course, the main event--it lasts over an hour and winds its way through several blocks of the town and ends on the main roadway in the heart of the city near the old Depot. It includes a down-home assortment of pretty much anyone who wants to get there early enough to join in the line: local "celebrities," pageant queens, cloggers, antique cars and trucks, Little League players decked out in their uniforms, church groups, teams of horses, Shriners in their tiny clown-cars, the local high school marching band, baton twirlers, several fire trucks, and (since it's an election year) just about every politician in the state who's still breathing (and maybe one or two who aren't . . . . sometimes it's hard to tell.) One year we even saw a man riding in the raised bucket of his front-end loader. I think an ambulance was positioned in line near this wacky entrant. When my kids were younger and easily impressed, they thought the best part of the day was gathering tons and tons of candy which is tossed from the make-shift floats along the parade route. Nowadays for my kids, those days have gone the way of the railroad and we've outgrown that part. So this year our crew is joining in the parade and we'll all ride in a vintage WWII army jeep my husband restored recently. But we have buckets and buckets of candy which we'll toss to the young kids who are still easily impressed.
Hope you all have a wonderful 4th of July. God bless America.