Friday's Weekend Column
Eighty Nine Floats In A Parade

by James Glaser
August 15, 2003

Never before did Northome, Minnesota have a parade so big and never before were there that many people in Northome. The streets were packed, there was float after float, antique tractor after tractor, old cars, old and new logging equipment, horses, motorcycles, people walking on stilts, clowns, fire engines, and even Smoky the Bear. Northome did have a happy one hundredth birthday celebration.

Nine hundred people came "home" to the all school reunion, not bad for a school that graduated less than thirty students in its biggest year. There was one lady from the class of 1929. Elvis showed up and gave a hour and a half concert.

Saturday morning Charmaine and I were at the American Legion booth for breakfast at 6:30 am and there was already a crowd. At 9 am the Cotton Candy stand opened and I was fifth in line. The five of us were all standing around getting this huge sugar rush and all of a sudden we hear a gun shot and a hundred runners go by us for the start of the six mile "Sink Hole Scramble" race. I thought I might try to catch up when that sugar hit, but they were out of sight by then.

The Parade was at one, just after the kids parade and we drove our International truck in it. I felt good that it didn't overheat as a couple old cars did. One model T ran into the back of a motorcycle and no one thought of a scoop shovel behind the horses. We threw out 960 Tootsie Rolls and the kids had bags full of candy as every float threw some out.

Even today there are some people getting over the weekend. The Mizpah Ballroom sold out of beer Friday night and the Volunteer Fireman needed thirty kegs for the Beer Garden at the Fair and the Saturday night street dance.

Saturday afternoon there was a style show with clothes from 1903 to present and about sixty dresses were shown along with some wool long underwear.

Sunday was the Demolition Derby and sorry to say some one from Kelliher won. Kelliher has been the Northome's rival for the last 100 years, so that was a blow.

No one got hurt that I heard of and only one DWI was given out as getting a sober driver to take you around is very popular up here. The weather was just perfect, in the eighties with a breath of wind.

We had some incredible fireworks. I was told fireworks don't keep over the winter very well and companies that set up these displays are willing to give a better price in the "off season" than they could around the Forth of July when the demand is so high. I often wonder what the deer and other wildlife think about fireworks.

Oh yeah, our float with the three layer cake that had the women pop out at the judging stand was a real hit and we took first prize. The ladies of our township gave out over 400 cupcakes. We gave our prize money to the new library fund. To keep our lady cool we put in about forty pounds of ice with her, for the ride down the parade route.

We are thinking of a forty foot fish next year with some sort of mechanical movement involved. Another town bought our cake for their Centennial celebration. We charged another donation to the library.

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