Independence Day parade set for Saturday

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 26, 2003

The Fourth of July is a week away but the Independence Day celebration begins early in Brundidge.

The Salute to Veterans will be at 7 p.m. tonight at the Knox Ryals Pavilion on the grounds of the historic Bass House. As soon as the program ends, the grounds will be prepared for a second patriotic celebration, the annual Independence Day Parade sponsored by the Brundidge Business Association (BBA).

The parade will get under way at 9 a.m. Saturday and follow a route along Main Street from north to south.

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The parade will be one of the biggest ever with 90-plus entries.

On parade will be everything, from mules and wagons to professional floats, from clowns to dignitaries. There will be bands, soldiers, fire trucks and noise-making machines, kids on bikes and special things and pretty things.

Charlie Butler will be honored as the Grand Marshal of the parade. L.A. Robinson, 40-year agriculture teacher with the Pike County School System, will also be recognized.

The Independence Day parade is often the first pubic appearance for many beauty queens since they were crowned. Queens from all across the area are part of the annual red, white and blue event.

After the parade, everyone is welcomed to Brundidge by Mayor Jimmy Ramage and the queens are introduced at the Knox Ryals Pavilion.

This year there will be a lot for visitors and local folks to do before and after the parade.

Between 15 and 20 artists and craftsmen will set up shop on the grounds of the Bass House and they will have items for display and for sale.

"Trade Day in May was rained out and so the BBA thought it would be the fair thing to do to invite the vendors back to town for the Independence Day Parade," said Jimmy Hollis, chairman of the arts and crafts committee. "We invited them and the response has been very good."

Hollis said the arts and crafts show will provide shopping opportunities before and after the parade.

There also will be entertainment from the pavilion stage and everyone is invited to visit the arts and crafts booths and tap their toes to the beat of live music.

"We also want to encourage people to visit the downtown business while they are in town," Hollis said. "Stay and see what all Brundidge has to offer."