People will start lining First Street early to see the annual Kla Ha Ya Days Parade that starts at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 19. The Seafair-sanctioned event has been around for more than 100 years and in 2013 was the Pacific Northwest’s largest parade when it boasted 107 parade entries. Kla Ha Ya Days Parade chair, Colleen Currid, expects the same number this year for the community parade.
Leading the Grand Parade is the Kids Parade from 10:15 to 10:30 a.m. Then you’ll see drill teams, high school bands, dance troops, mini donkeys, floats and surprises coming from the community entrants. And it’s all free!
Putting on a parade requires time, commitment and a great sense of humor. Colleen Currid has all the attributes. Ever since Currid’s parents took her to parades when she was a little girl she wanted to be a big part of them. She has been a volunteer Seafair Parade Marshal for 27 years and Kla Ha Ya Days Parade chair for almost seven years. “I absolutely love it!” she explained. “I’m not putting on a parade for the community; it’s the community’s parade. I just put them in order.”
She picked Miss Everett Hydroplane as her favorite parade entry. “We have our own home-town hydro. Most people don’t know that and that’s so exciting.” She also enjoys seeing the Scout troops, especially the Cub Scouts with their chests puffed out as they pass their grandparents and how proud they look.
Before the parade is the 5 Mile and 1 Mile River Run. Afterwards will be plenty of silly games to play, a street fair, chainsaw carving exhibition, music, food and a wine and beer garden — something for everyone in the family. Go to www.klahayadays.com/events/schedule for a complete schedule.