I love a parade! When I attend the Three Rivers Festival, and especially the parade, I feel like I'm celebrating with friends. It's as though the City is throwing a huge party, and everyone is welcome. Parades seem to be a celebration of color. All of the bright and striking reds, blues, and yellows seem to excite the onlookers. Each of us shares in the excitement, and it results in a fun filled day.
Family members strategically plan before attending the parade, discussing where they will park, where they will sit, and where they will meet if someone gets separated by the commotion. They come early and set up their seats for a great view, and then patiently await the parade. Viewers line the street to watch entries of marching bands, floats, motorized vehicles, animals, and large balloons.
It's always special to get together with a group of family and friends. I especially enjoyed participating in this year's parade with my grandchildren and other relatives, workers from our office, and the workers' family members and friends. We lined up for the parade around 8:00 a.m. Our horses behaved well as they patiently awaited the start of the parade. My brother drove his red wagon with his three Morgan horses, 15 year old Mountain Boy, 11 year old Wilcox, and 6 year old Lex. This was Lex's first time participating in the Three Rivers Festival parade, and he was as awesome as the other two horses. The wagon was filled with children who were as excited as the spectators lining the streets. The children did their part by waving to the spectators. The horses held their heads high and trotted the parade route, which was almost 2 miles. The crowd seemed to love them. The route started at Wayne and Rockhill Streets, went through the West Central Neighborhood and downtown, and then ended at Calhoun and Superior Streets just a few blocks from our office. Most of the porches of the lovely homes in the neighborhood were filled with spectators.
During a time when many of us are divided by our political views and isolated as a result of amazing technology (especially so with the grandchildren), a parade brings us together. I'm still receiving phone calls from friends who are delighted to tell me that they enjoyed seeing us in the parade.
One of the great things about attending the parade is there is little or no cost to it. You can forget about any problems you have, and focus on what's going on at the moment. I believe that's why people come back year after year to enjoy the festivities. We love feeling like we are a part of a larger whole as we celebrate one another.
Richard A. Stevenson, Sr.
Wayne Township Trustee