June 4th, 2007

ani, glitter

Grandma Rode in the Parade in the 1990's and He Was Junior Prince in 1964

In 1964, I was given the opportunity to participate in the Rose Festival when I was lucky enough to be selected as a Junior Prince.

My family was very excited, but my grandmother more than anyone. She'd come over to help me practice my speech and give me pointers on how to address the crowd and so on. She was really bitten by the 'Rose Festival Bug!'

During the Junior Parade she was there to cheer for our float. During the Grand Floral Parade she was there. Everywhere the court went, Grandma was there! She really wanted to be in the parade so much.

Time passed and life went on -- and in the late 1990's Grandma got her chance to be in the parade. Not just in the parade, but to ride in one of lead cars! This was one of the thrills of a lifetime for her.

Our family waited for her car to pass. As it approached our spot on Fourth Street (where we watch every year) her car and the entire parade stopped so we could give her roses! She got to lead the parade for next couple of years and every year the car would stop so she could collect her roses!

My grandmother was Francis Potter -- and her son (and my uncle) was Chief of Police Tom Potter. Tom will be appearing in the parade this year [for the third time] and we'll remember those years "Grandma got to lead the parade"!

~J. Douglas Degn