“It’s beautiful day for a parade.”
“Thanks for coming. We sure appreciate you weathering the weather to be here.”
Those frequent acknowledgements, even if one repeated as snide, came from the inconceivably-large number of parade watchers as heavy rain dripped from their umbrellas, hats, and many uncovered-heads.
It’s impossible to put a complete damper on a parade.
“The parade will go on regardless of wind, cold, snow or rain” was the response when we called a day earlier to cancel our stall, supper, and motel reservations as a first-time participant in the annual Old Fashion Christmas Parade at Lawrence.
“Well, we’ll be there despite any of those conditions,” we quickly responded. “But, our vehicle might be a little different than described on our entry form.”
Instant reply: “That doesn’t matter. We just want you to come. This is an old-fashioned parade. Our forefathers would have had to make changes to combat the elements, and we’re doing the same.”
After wimping out a week earlier from the Christmas parade in Topeka, because “it was too cold, windy, and dark,” plus not being able to figure out vehicle lights, we vouched to make the Lawrence affair.
This one is quite special because there are no motorized vehicles allowed. Even horseback riders had to accompany horse-drawn transportation.
The Lawrence community goes all out in accommodations, providing meals and overnight lodging for both people and horses.
Response is large with entries from at least a 300-mile radius. Early reports indicated as many as 400 horses.
However, when we arrived, 95 vehicles were entered. “There have been several cancelations,” the lady qualified.
We don’t know how many were really there, but it was a sizable group with about every size and shape of horse and vehicle imaginable. We drove Mae pulling our high-wheeled cart, instead of the fringed-top carriage.
Besides those watching outside in the sometimes heavy downpour, there were more spectators inside stores, homes, and parked vehicles. Most had big smiles accompanied by many waves and even occasional applause.
There’s nothing like being in a parade, or even watching a parade, obviously.
Reminds us of Second Corinthians 2:14: “God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade.” Most important is Luke 3:1: “Everyone will be there to see the parade of God’s salvation.”