July 10, 2012
July 4 parade has become candy mecca
Before the July 4 Kids, Pets N’ Pride Parade becomes a distant memory, let’s revisit it.
The parade has been a community treasure since its first march down Front Street more than 30 years ago. There just isn’t anything as patriotic as this celebration of families decked out in every conceivable red, white and blue outfit with their fun accessories, all while riding bikes and scooters, walking dogs and rabbits, and waving flags.
Sadly, it has become hard to enjoy it, given the many kids in the middle of the street scrambling for the tossed candy.The candy throwing needs to be banned. Hey, this isn’t Halloween!
Sure, everybody likes a cherry sucker or a Tootsie Roll, but the candy has overtaken the point of the parade.
The kids who came with their families to watch a good parade never saw it. Their eyes were only on the pavement as they watched for the next candy toss. The younger kids in strollers, parents, grandparents and friends who were not part of the mayhem had their vision blocked by kids and parents who moved into the candy fray.
Within 15 minutes of the start of the parade, the parade participants and candy scramblers became a melting pot of people in the street. Many on the sidelines were seen leaving early, giving up in disgust.
Crowd control is one solution, but it would take a small army of volunteers to hold back the crowd seeking to satisfy their sweet tooth. The easiest solution is to prohibit the throwing of candy, just as it is at Salmon Days.
Everybody loves a parade — when it’s visible.