Beverly Godfrey column: Awards on parade in Superior
I’ve been an amateur parade critic for years, never content to just sit and watch, opinions bubbling to the surface with every new group that passes my spot on the sidewalk.
Superior’s Fourth of July parade is always my favorite of the year. There’s plenty of candy being tossed about, lots of music and fire trucks, it’s summer, and everyone seems to be in a good mood. Although the parade committee presents awards, I’m going to present my own here for Friday’s entrants.
Coolest person to see: World War II veteran Russ Pederson, 93, who appeared as a special guest of the American Legion honor guard. He survived the Normandy invasion, saw combat in Germany and was a prisoner of war for seven months until being liberated in 1945. Seeing him made me stop worrying about how long the walk was going to be back to my car.
Best motorcycle rider: It’s a tossup between the one who had a Captain America shield on his back and the guy who did a headstand while riding his bike.
Most parade-y thing: The Superior High School marching band, with an extra gold star awarded to the high-kicking dancers who accompanied them.
Prettiest horses: A tie between Great Northern Classic Rodeo and Free Spirit Rodeo. Because all horses are pretty.
Best giant coffee pot: Arco, with a special shout-out to the kid who was getting doused in the cup.
Goosebumps award: The bagpipe players of Aad Shrine Pipes & Drums. I’m a little disappointed if a parade doesn’t have bagpipes, so I thank you for getting all dressed up and coming out to play for us.
Most beloved scary costumes: Laurel and Hardy, of course.
Best police officer providing security: They’re all the best.
Best Zamboni: Superior Amateur Hockey Association. I hope people appreciate that not any old parade will have an ice resurfacing machine.
Best T-shirt cannon: University of Wisconsin-Superior, who shouldn’t feel their victory is any less because they were the only T-shirt cannon. You can only compete against those who show up, right? Besides, there was only one Zamboni in the parade, too, and that didn’t stop it from winning.
Best mascot: UWS again. Buzz the Yellowjacket is top-notch.
Float with the most accordions: A World of Accordions Museum, of course.
Being smart is cool award: The Summer Orchestra kids playing strings along with a Coldplay song.
Cutest dog in the crowd: Mufasa, a 2-year-old goldendoodle owned by Jay Johnson of Superior. He kicked things up a notch with red, white and blue tinsel shooting stars on his harness.
Best old car: 1931 Model A Ford. Why is my 2000 minivan literally falling apart, but this 83-year-old car is chugging down a parade route? I suspect I’m to blame.
No fear award: Either of the skydivers. I assume and hope they landed safely.
Vehicle most likely to actually be a Transformer: It’s a tossup between the Jeff Foster Trucking bright pink “Circle of Hope” semi truck and the big, red Lake City Towing tow truck that was bigger than a fire engine. If those two had turned into robots and battled, it really would have blown the lid off the whole event. Maybe next year.
Beverly Godfrey is a News Tribune copy editor. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.