Juneteenth tradition

Juneteenth marching band, AustinWe all wondered just how it was that the riders in the giant H-E-B self-propelled shopping cart got up there (scissor platform? giant forklift? bucket or cherry-picker truck?), but it was the live music that people came to hear at the traditional Juneteenth parade. Seeing and being seen were also right up there on the list.

Capital Metro was hanging on to those coveted free bouncing balls and not tossing many of them to the crowd, and H-E-B was pitching wholesome boxes of raisins (in contrast to the bubble gum and lollipops of others). Other popular favors were fans for cooling, free chilled drinking water, and Mardi Gras beads.

We took up our favorite station, in the shade almost across from the Fresh Up Club. Sheriff Greg Hamilton was the only dignitary that I noticed doing without an identifying sign and people did recognize him without that aid, so his confidence was justified. I was disappointed that we didn’t see the gaited horses in the parade this year (they may have been at the very end); Wells Fargo sent a stagecoach for the first time. My favorite float carried cosmetologists wielding a giant prop pair of scissors and accompanying mirror.

People were here all the way from Hearne to play and march, even though the Alvin Patterson Battle of the Bands and Drumline Competition is not until this Saturday (Nelson Athletic Stadium; advance tickets available from Mitchie’s Fine Art).

Update: See some brief video snippets from the parade, with more to come.

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