Parade has ‘lost its spark’


Dear editor,

After walking in the Carmelfest parade the last 5 years, this was my first year to actually sit back and watch if from the sidelines. I was disappointed at how generic it has become with the same old entries as the year before.

I wanted to bring up how some things in the parade just didn’t make sense, in regards to the holiday. I can see having marching bands, Girl/Boy/Cub Scouts, TV personalities, fire trucks, the Shriners, etc. But, the Mellow Mushroom, if that’s what that big yellow thing was walking around? Three entries for St.  Vincent Hospital? And, the one big one I can’t figure out…the National Guard band and war vets at the very end of the parade? Placed after the Tae Kwon Do group? I would think they would get a premium spot in the lineup. I believe they actually deserve a place near the front. Except for several color guards, flags were lacking throughout.

Is our parade not a fan of floats? Salsbury had an actual float, but it was just flowers, pink mostly. Any floats/vehicles with patriotic themes? Very few that I saw, which is too bad. Seems the creativity part of being in a parade amounts to some garland and shoe polish on windshields and who can pass out the weirdest stuff along the parade route (yardsticks, plastic bags, band aids, measuring spoons). No re-enactors like patriots, Thomas Jefferson, or John Adams? They were only the founders of our country. Kudos to them? Not so much anymore, I guess. The Scottish pipers were the most closely related to Independence Day since they did help the colonies

Has Carmel ever had contests for floats/entries judged on certain themes? Prizes wouldn’t need to be given, just bragging rights until the next year would be enough. Well, maybe their picture in the Current in Carmel paper 🙂 Nothing wrong with a little incentive to think outside the box.

I feel that the parade has lost its spark, no pun intended. It needs to be refreshed and updated; more patriotic, less fluff. I get the “patriotism” of this holiday. It’s not just a day off to enjoy barbecues and watch fireworks, it’s a day to remember WHY we are able to enjoy these small luxuries, “…for which American patriots sacrificed their lives and fortunes.”

So, that’s my view of this year’s parade. It could be so much more, if it just had a little more heart and soul in it. I’m hoping it finds it next year. If not, then my first year may have been my last. I’m going to turn back to watching The Patriot now, great movie!

Thanks for listening…and Happy Independence Day!

Michelle Carroll

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