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ani, glitter

Rose Festival a Part of Her Life Since Birth

The Rose Festival -- and especially the Grand Floral Parade -- has always been a part of my life. "Susie's first Grand Floral" was a notation placed in my baby book!

Growing up in a music loving family, I attended each parade until time to leave for sights beyond. My job on Junior Parade day as a child was to haul the piano bench on my wagon up to 33rd Street near us, in order to reserve a place for the family to watch.

Soon it was time to enter high school and march the parades with the Grant High School Band! And our class chose not only a princess my graduating year, but the Queen, Linda Jean Jackson.

Sue in her high school band uniform

Now nearly a life later, I am reliving those wonderful memories of the Grand Floral Parade by marching with the One More Time Around Again Marching Band. This year will be my eighth exciting year!

Sue in the OMTAAMB

As a postscript, I fondly remember watching my grandfather preen his roses all spring -- and on show entry day selecting the very best in the early morning dew time to take to the Rose Show. And all of going down to the show to see if his rose won. (Sorry to say I can't remember if they did!)

Our family faithfully went to each Queen's Coronation, and my freshmen year it was such excitement to be on the floor of the Multnomah Stadium with the Queen walking through the mass bands, of which I was a part. (That was the last year it was held there.) Three years later, my girl friend and I screamed loudly at the Memorial Coliseum when our princess became queen -- this meant we'd automatically be the Queen's Band! The next morning the Grant high school band was on the tarmac at the airport with the court, welcoming some arriving dignitary.

And a lasting memory was proudly marching in front of the Court float during the Grand Floral Parade.

~Sue Starr

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