***Note*** A couple of pics got double-posted--oops!--and I'm too lazy to figure out which codes belong to which pics and correct it. Also, I just learned that if you click on the pic, a larger version will open so you can see more detail. Cool!
I love the Fourth of July. After that long post-Christmas/New Year's letdown, it's great to have a big holiday to celebrate.
This year, I checked out the City of Linconln's home page to see what was going on. I'm going to a barbecue tonight with Mom and Dad (their friends graciously extended the invite to include me), but what to do in the daytime?
Turns out Lincoln has an annual parade. It sounded like it might be fun, so I set the alarm for 6:00, and drove to historic downtown Lincoln early to get a good spot.
And fun it was!
I love small-town Americana. There is something comforting about a community that takes great pride in showing off it's own people. Everyone got excited to see the local fire crews and Little League teams. Flags were everywhere. People were decked out in red, white, and blue...and so were their kids...and their dogs.
A parade always starts, of course, with a police escort:
...followed, of course, by Old Glory, escorted by the local VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars):
Even the camera girl is showing her colors:
The grand marshal this year is a lifelong resident of Lincoln, and a much-loved science teacher at Lincoln High School. Cool! A teacher...
Next on the parade route was a group of Mexican-American riders, accompanied by their families and a small but proud marching/mariachi band:
The local kids had a chance to shine, too. The first group to pass by was the Lincoln All Stars, a softball league for local girls:
It's not the greatest picture, but at least I got them--the driver of this Cadillac Escalade was 4, and her brother is 2. They were so cute, waving and clapping their hands:
No parade would be complete without the local Cub Scouts:
...or old farts in golf carts. Ha! A lot of people in Mom and Dad's community, Sun City, drive electric golf carts around the area to run their errands. They had their own place in the parade, and, as you can see, they were decked out in their best colors:
More gorgeous horses:
Uncle Sam almost rode out of my picture:
Cowboys in training:
And, of course, what's a parade without the pageant winners?
More beautiful, decked-out horses:
And the emcee even gave a shout-out to the pooper scoopers:
Cute little Lady Liberty:
And the Democratic Club of Lincoln (supporting Obama for president, and Charlie Brown--no, not that one--for Congress):
What is more all-American than Baseball?
Mendes Ranch, on the outskirts of Lincoln, has passed this old truck down through the family. The ladies in the cab both learned how to drive in this truck as teenagers. It's recently been restored. They were followed by the most gorgeous horse:
Another great old car:
Not to be outdone by the Dems, the local Republicans had a spot in the parade, too, endorsing Tom McClintock:
This was cute:
Bringing up the rear, of course, were the fine men and women of the Lincoln Fire Department and the Placer County Fire Department (accompanied by Smokey Bear):
I'm so glad I made the effort to get up early and go to this parade. It's not fancy or flashy, it's just a small-town effort to celebrate our nation's birthday--but it was great fun, and full of great photo ops. I'll happily go again next year.