As the participants waited for the Second Annual Fourth of July Parade to begin, volunteers offered coffee, donuts, and brownies to expectant Santa Monicans. Patriotism practically enveloped the participants in its profound ability to unite. Santa Monica Arts Commissioner Rebecca Holbrook said that the Fourth of July Parade “gave a more local, community feeling” to those who live in Santa Monica.
Tish Tisherman, a representative of Meals on Wheels and a member of the Chamber of Commerce, said the parade is “the perfect way to start off the 4th [of July].” This proved to be true: Thousands of locals gathered along Main Street and watched floats, musicians, organizations, horses, the Santa Monica Police Department, and yes, even a rollerblading hot dog in a bun, make their way down the street. There were over 1,000 participants in the parade that included over 40 groups and organizations. Roughly five thousand spectators came to enjoy the Fourth of July fun that Main Street had to offer.
As the parade progressed, more and more onlookers flooded into the streets to watch the festivities. At one point, as the parade passed Main and Pico Boulevard, one man from “Mitzvah on the Go For People on the Go” proceeded to entertain the spectators by tumbling down a quarter of the block, and then dancing in a circle with his group.
The parade eventually turned onto Neilson Way, where it slowly came to a stop in a parking lot along the beach. The participants congregated for a while in the parking lot to discuss the parade’s turnout and effect on Santa Monica. One local who participated in the parade said that, “[It’s wonderful that] so many people came to see it!”
The most refreshing aspect of the Parade was that everyone who participated or observed lent support to every Santa Monica organization who marched. There was not one sour moment in the mass celebration of our nation’s Independence Day, and all who contributed made the second annual Parade more successful than the first. Many participants also claim that this year’s festivities were much better organized than last year’s, and therefore much more enjoyable for Santa Monica.
The Parade was presented by the Ocean Park Association, and was sponsored by: Friends of Sunset Park, Pacific Park, Wilshire/Montana Neighborhood Coalition, Santa Monica Daily Press, City of Santa Monica, Urth Cafe, Santa Monica Convention & Visitors Bureau, The Recording Academy, Rand Corporation, Westside Parties & Events, and The Santa Monica Mirror. The Honorary Grand Marshall was Chief of Police Tim Jackman for his service to the Santa Monica community.