Our Seafair parade enters its 66th year with the theme “Route 66”. The drill teams are a lot of fun to watch. My daughter did drill team, so I went to ALL the parades (every weekend, all summer). Try to position yourself near the Wallingford Center, that’s where they perform for the judges. If you like it, check out the International District parade, as the Chinese drill team is amazing there (dragons and tight choreography with hundreds of kids).
For such a long tradition, the parade has been on shaky ground lately. At one time the parade was the main money maker for the Wallingford Neighborhood Office (remember that little spot behind Tully’s? Remember Tully’s?), but that stopped being the case a few years back and was partly why the WNO shut down. The Wallingford Community Senior Center took over for a couple years and was trying out a festival at Wallingford Playfield and then Meridian Playground, but they also failed to make money (partly due to a freak rain shower last year).
Now the Wallingford Chamber is running the show and hoping to make a go of it. The festival after the parade is scaled way down, with QFC allowing some booths in their parking lot that have kid activities, and some merchants having a route 66 scavenger hunt. There was a push to get the Community Council involved, but the sort of parade/festival a group of lawyers and architects would put on would be all bylaws and land use code amendments.
I’m volunteering to help with the parade as I like the idea of a Wallingford parade and hope it keeps going. Here’s the volunteer needs:
- Thursday, July 9th 5 to 6 PM: Put up “no parking” signs. 3 people needed.
- Saturday, July 11th during the parade, 10:00 to 12:30: Barricade monitors assemble at the Lincoln High School parking lot at 10, block streets during the parade, then remove street closure barricades, collapse No Parking signs, and collect them into pickup locations after the parade. 6 people needed.
- Saturday, July 11th after the parade, 12:30 to 1:30: Walk parade route and pick up garbage and flyers. Gloves, bags & pick-up tools provided. 2 people needed.
You’ll get a nice t-shirt for your troubles! I figure I’ll monitor a barricade, because I like the idea of blocking off streets to cars so people can safely walk and bike. If you can help, please contact the extremely overworked Diane Gordon (dianeg206 at hotmail dot com).