Led by Grand Marshal Ken Cook, chief meteorologist at FOX 5 Atlanta, and his wife, Susie, the parade left Tabernacle Baptist Church’s parking lot at 9 a.m. winding through downtown — Douglas, Church, Bartow, Main and Stonewall streets — before returning to the church lot.
The crowds along Main Street waved miniature flags as entrants ranging from the sublime — a float packed with veterans — to the ridiculous — Shriners in souped-up go karts — to politicians eased down Main Street stopping only for the ever present freight train.
Abby Baca, 22 months, of Emerson, witnessing her first parade, couldn’t suppress her delight as it passed. Every entrant, especially the horses, got a wave and a squeal of delight. By parade’s end, however, the wave was replaced by a yawn.
After the parade, the activities shifted to Dellinger Park featuring live entertainment, children’s activities, pony and camel rides, a petting zoo and a car show presented by the Shrine Club. The celebration concluded with a fireworks display sponsored by the Optimist Club and the city of Cartersville.