The summer swelter did not keep close to 200 Cabin Johners of all ages from gathering to commemorate the Fourth of July with the annual parade and reading of the Declaration of Independence.
This year the festivities kicked off at 10:30 am with some 50 families meeting to decorate bikes and strollers. Their efforts guaranteed a fantastic display of patriotism when the parade got underway at 11:00 am. The parade marchers made their way along the MacArthur Boulevard bike and pedestrian path and were met at the Clara Barton Community Center by Pam Zilly playing patriotic tunes on her bagpipes.
Once the parade arrived at the community center black top, everyone enjoyed watermelon, donuts, and much-appreciated beverages. Larry Hefflin led the annual reading of excerpts from the Declaration of Independence and the kids played with bubbles, balls, and other trinkets.
This year brought some changes to the traditional activities. The reversal of the parade direction was considered a success by all as it provided a much safer and larger space for the post-parade celebration by ending at the community center black top. The pre-parade decorating took place on 79th Street below the shopping center and provided direct access to the bike and pedestrian path without the need to cross MacArthur Boulevard at the start of the route.
Many thanks to the Lai and Ingalls families for coordinating the bike and stroller decorating and the Ruppert and Jaeger/Tunador families for hosting the pre-parade fun in their driveways. The CJCA also thanks Amy Elsbree, Irena Bojanova, Greg Pawlson, and Nancy Russell for coordinating the refreshments and fun at the end of the parade and to all who pitched in to make the day such a success. If you have suggestions for next year’s parade or would like to lend a hand, please be in touch with CJCA President Susan Shipp at email@example.com.
By Amy Elsbree