The sirens, thousands of people standing and sitting along the sidewalks, illustrious floats sailing melifluously through the streets equates to one thing — the River Days Grand Parade which was held on Saturday.
As is the custom, River Days Parade participants, consisting of River Days Pageant contestants, local school bands, politicians, and a host of businesses and organizations meet down at Spartan Stadium in Portsmouth to get lined up and organized.
Former Ohio Governor and candidate for Senate, Ted Strickland was among the many participants in the River Days Parade on Saturday.
“I am back here for River Days because I am running for the Senate, and I wanted to touch base with some of my friends and supporters, to encourage them to make sure that they are registered and to get out and vote,” Strickland said. “This is a very important election, and this is my home county. This is my home area. I know Southern Ohio, and I care about Southern Ohio having served this area as the Governor, and now I want to serve this region as their Senator.
The weather added to the grandeur of the River Days Parade, Strickland said.
“It is a beautiful day. It could not be a more perfect day here in Portsmouth, Ohio, ” Strickland said. “It is just exciting to see everyone. Everyone looks to be having a great time, and it is such a wonderful part of the River Days celebration. It is just good to be home again.”
Stan Tackett, chairman of the River Days Parade, said had approximately 280 units participate in Saturday’s parade.
“Ricer Equipment grand parade went very well, about 280 units, and about seven miles in length, with our grand marshall, Dr. Rebecca Shoettle Tackett said. “This is my 16th year doing this. The weather was fantastic for this year’s parade. People can check the Portsmouth River Days Facebook page for the lineup of the remainder of the events, with the fireworks at 10’oclock.”
Dr. Tim Angel, chairperson of the Portsmouth River Days Festival committee, said he was pleased with the outcome of this year’s River Days Parade.
“I thought it went very well. The weather was beautiful, the crowd was wonderful, and there were very few problems. I just wish that my good friend and River Days mentor, Dr. Ray Carson, would have been with us to see it,” Angel said. “I know he was watching over us today. I will surely miss him.”
Children watching the River Days Parade from the sidelines competing for candy dispensed by parade participants.
Reach Portia Williams at 740-464-3862, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.