Kidding Around: Bring on the parades

Dec. 07, 2012 @ 05:53 AM

In my last column I wrote that everyone in this county takes their parades really seriously. But I wanted to clarify this week and say that I also love parades.

Every time a parade comes to town, I am like a little kid. I love seeing the floats, old cars, fire trucks, horses, marching bands and anything else that rides by.

On Thanksgiving, I informed my daddy that he would be changing the channel from ESPN in time for the Macy's Day Parade. Why would anyone watch sports instead of a giant snoopy float rolling down the street?

When I watch that parade, I like to daydream that I am part of one of the groups that perform scenes from their musicals. I could be Annie if I put on a red wig right?

Some of my favorite parades I have attended lately have been the book character parades that the elementary schools put on. I love to see how creative the students and teachers are with their costumes. Something about seeing kindergartners dressed up as Darth Vader and E.T. makes me smile.

Back in the day, I was in several parades myself.

I have already written a column about my trip to Disney World where I got to dance in the Magic Kingdom parade with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, but that was not my only parade experience.

When I was young, I took ballet and tap lessons. Don't ask me to dance now though because I don't remember any of it. However, I can remember bits and pieces of walking in a parade with the dance studio. We were young, so our mothers walked with us and held our hands. I would look ahead of me and be jealous of the gymnastics girls who could do cartwheels. I guess I remember that because I never mastered the cartwheel. It was just not meant to be.

I think my next parade was with my Girl Scout troop. I guess our troop was asked to walk in it and we had to come up with some type of banner to represent us. So my momma and the other leaders decided that the best way to hold the banner was to stick a broomstick through the top of it. It must have worked out quite nicely, since I don't remember any mishaps.

After that, I took a break from parades for a while until I got to high school and joined the marching band. Of course, we had to participate in all of the Christmas parades.

I was in the pit, which meant I played the instruments that didn't march. So for the parades I got the task of throwing candy to children. Sometimes we got to ride in the back of a truck and sometimes we had to walk.

I have to say, it was always cold but it was a lot of fun. As a high school student, I rather enjoyed watching them scramble all over each other for a piece of peppermint. I always tried to save myself a piece of candy to munch of after.

After those four years of Christmas parades, I was expecting to be a spectator for a while.

But my life had other ideas for me when I joined the Helen Foil Beard women's society in college. Turns out, we had to participate in the homecoming parade. The theme was different decades and we chose to do the 1990s. So guess who got to be Baby Spice?

Yep, I pulled my hair up into pigtails, threw on a pink dress and hopped into the back of that truck singing "Spice Up Your Life." It was a great morning.

So far, that is the last parade that I participated in. However, I would not turn down the chance to be in another one. Bring on the parades.