On Wednesday October 19 the tradition of the Milford Community parade will continue downtown featuring over 100 entries including bands, fire companies, civic and business floats, scout troops and community families. It will not be long before residents of Milford see lawn chairs and caution tape lining Walnut Street, reserving viewing areas for individuals in the community. Exciting new entries including the Philadelphia String Band and local drumlines along with the traditional costume characters, fire trucks and community floats promise to make this year a huge success.
The Milford Community Parade, originally themed as a Halloween parade, began 70 years ago under Ed Evans who was Milford’s Mayor during World War II. In recent history the Gray family has facilitated the event for the past 25 years. The parade moved to themes, instead of Halloween, in the early ‘90s in order to move away from the negative attributes associated with the holiday. This year the theme is unique as participants are able to develop their own vision based on their favorite themes of past parades.
“It will be a very diverse parade because each entry will choose their own theme,” commented Charles gray, organizer of the Milford Community Parade. “You have to come out and watch to see what people are going to do.”
The parade will begin at the Milford Middle School and end at Milford High School taking participating groups approximately 30 minutes to complete the route. Three reviewing booths will be constructed on Walnut Street where each entry will be judged within their respective category. The reviewing booths will be located at City Hall, The Church of God and Gooden’s Floral Shop.
As always bands from across the state of Delaware will compete for awards to take home to their schools or universities. Participating bands are not only judged by local dignitaries but also by the National Judges Association.
“The bands, large and small, are always a favorite,” commented Mr. Gray. “We have 10 bands participating this year from all over Delmarva”
In years past, the parade has enjoyed an audience as large as 35,000 spectators and 3,000 participants. The parade kicks off at 6:30pm at the corner of Walnut Street and Seabury Avenue and will arrive downtown by 6:50pm. The Parade has brought citizens from all over the Delmarva Peninsula, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and even Virginia to watch the parade in a beautiful downtown and River area.
Perhaps the most diverse parade yet, with participants choosing their own theme, it will be exciting to see the different takes on parades of the past. the countless hours of volunteer work from over 300 individuals from Milford and surrounding municipalities will pay off on Wednesday, October 19 as the first parade entry takes their first step onto Walnut Street.
Groups and businesses still wanting to participate will need to complete an application and return it to the Parade Committee by October 8, 2011 for consideration. Applications and additional information about the Milford Community Parade can be found at http://milfordparade.wufoo.com/forms/milford-community-parade-entry-application/.