There is something about a parade and in Penticton, the Peach Festival has the largest in the B.C. Interior.
“There are about 75 entries this year,” said Teresa Kendall, one of the directors for the Penticton Peach Festival. “We definitely get a lot of people that love entering and come back again and again. We have the Seattle All-City Marching Band playing here four of the last five years and there are over 100 members in the band.”
Besides five marching bands, there will also be floats that are coming from all over B.C. and Washington State to participate in Saturday’s parade sponsored by Peters Bros.
“With the economy, it is really tough to get people to travel, but I think this is just such a nice place to come to and such a great festival people love to come here,” said Kendall.
The Peachfest float has been re-designed and will have the new Miss Penticton royalty riding on it after being crowned the evening before.
The parade begins at 10 a.m. at Main Street and Eckhardt Avenue and proceeds north on Main Street, along Lakeshore Drive to the S.S. Sicamous and disbands at the Rose Garden car lot. Parking is not permitted anywhere along the parade route. Vehicles on the parade route will be towed if found on it to the closest municipal parking lot.
The Penticton Elks Club is hosting a pancake breakfast to feed hundreds at the Elks Hall on Ellis Street between 7 a.m. and 11 a.m. The parade will be about an hour and a half so organizers advise to bringing something comfortable to sit on, sunscreen, a hat and find a spot to enjoy it all.
“It is going to be hot day so be prepared for that and try to think about parking and how you will get to the parade beforehand. The Farmers Market will be still going on but one street over. The best thing to do is park further away and walk in because so many roads will be blocked off,” said Kendall.
Parade-goers are also asked to bring non-perishable items which will be donated to the Salvation Army food bank and Feed The Valley. Sun FM Summer Heat Seeker 91 Camaro and the Penticton Fire Fighters are collecting along the parade route.
On Sunday children have their chance to march in their very own parade. The Kiddies Day Parade is sponsored by the Downtown Penticton Association and invites children ages 12 and under to dress themselves up, bring their tricycles, bicycles or any manner of non-motorized transportation.
Judging takes place at 10 a.m. in the City Centre parking lot, then at 11:30 a.m. a City of Penticton fire truck will lead the parade north on Main Street, east on Lakeshore Drive and into Okanagan Lake Park through the Centennial Plaza entrance. Prizes are awarded for several categories from the main stage in Okanagan Lake Park directly after the parade.
Entry forms are available from the Downtown Penticton Association office at 209-212 Main St., by phone at 250-493-8540 or at www.peachfest.com.