Bands and more are on the march for Thanksgiving

The annual parade steps off Saturday morning at 11

Family: events, activities

November 20, 2003|By Lori Sears | Lori Sears,SUN STAFF

Everybody loves a parade. And there's lots to love about Saturday's Thanksgiving Parade in Baltimore, an annual tradition for 52 years.

Marching bands from the community and from area schools, dance troupes, colorful floats, costume characters and equestrian units will all take part in the parade. And visitors can catch Santa Claus in his first appearance of the season.

The parade kicks off at 11 a.m. at Pratt and Eutaw streets, marches east on Pratt Street and ends at Pratt Street and Market Place.

Folks can perch at the reviewing stand at Pratt and Light streets to hear announcements of the passing attractions or take in the view from the Top of the World Observation Level of the World Trade Center at 401 E. Pratt St., or they can find a place along the route.

Bob the Vid Tech from Maryland Public Television is this year's grand marshal. And Fast Jimi Roberts and Maria Dennis from MIX 106.5-FM will be the hosts of the event.

The Mason Dixon Square Dance Federation will perform dance routines along the parade. The Fire Museum of Maryland will parade its vintage fire engines from 1922 and 1947.

The Kaleidoscope Homeschoolers will display their giant, multicolored puppets -- each handmade by the students.

Parade-watchers can also hear tunes by Doris Dow, this year's winner of the Mayor's Billie Holiday Vocal Competition. Dow will croon seasonal and holiday favorites.

Waving to the crowd will be the Orioles Bird, Miss Maryland, Miss Maryland Teen, Mrs. Maryland International, the Maryland Jockey Club mascot Blinkers and the mascot Captain Phil from Phillip's Harborplace.

Equestrian participants will include the United Horsemen's Association League of Maryland Horsemen and the Chesapeake Plantation Walking Horse Club Inc.

Joining the parade for the first time will be the Mount Clare Museum House, which will send a 1933 convertible along the route. The car will be occupied by living-history actors portraying the family of barrister Charles Carroll.

Veteran baton twirlers the Black Rose Twirlers will toss their batons in the air, as will new twirlers the Red Roses. Other participating units will include the Broesler School of Irish Dance, the Baltimore Streetcar Museum and Asylum Productions.

Participating bands will include the Frederick Douglass High School Marching Band, Stephen Decatur High School Marching Band, Edmondson-Westside Marching Band, Randallstown High School Marching Band and the Baltimore Marching Revels.

Santa Claus will ride the route of the parade, then stop at the Harborplace Amphitheatre, where he'll take requests from children who may have a gift wish or two to share with him.

Baltimore's Thanksgiving Parade runs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, and travels from Pratt and Eutaw streets to Pratt Street and Market Place. Free. Admission to Top of the World Observation Level is $2-$4. Call 877-BALTIMORE or visit www.promotionand for more information.

For more family events, see Page 53.

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