U-turn: Fourth of July parade will include motors
by Celia Shortt
Newnan city officials have clarified proposed changes to the annual Fourth of July parade that will now allow the inclusion of motorized vehicles.
In Saturday’s edition of The Newnan Times-Herald, Main Street Manager Courtney Collins said this year’s parade would be non-motorized, to allow for the safety of children who would be participating.
However, on Tuesday, she and other officials said the parade will include certain motorized vehicles, as well as high school bands, fire trucks, police cruisers and business floats.
The event will also include some new features, they added.
The main differences between this year’s parade and ones in the past include moving the start time of the parade from afternoon to morning, and the location of the parade route, said Hasco W Craver IV, business development director for Newnan. The start time will be at 9 a.m., and the route will be from the corner of Jackson Street and Temple Avenue to the Greenville Street Park just south of downtown.
The parade route is shorter – only through downtown and no longer going all the way to Newnan High School.
Craver anticipates the morning parade lasting about an hour. The parade will still feature the traditional fire department vehicles, police cruisers, band members from the area high schools, and floats from local businesses and organizations, he clarified Tuesday. Craver is also anticipating participation by military personnel.
If businesses or organizations wish to register a float, they need to contact Main Street Manager Courtney Collins before June 20 by calling 770-253-8283 or by emailing Ccollins@cityofnewnan.org.
Registration is free.
A big change in this year’s Fourth of July parade is an effort to increase community involvement by allowing children of all ages to participate in the parade. They are welcome to use any non-gasoline powered vehicles and to march in the parade.
“We’ve heard from a lot of excited parents of young children who are excited to have their children included,” said Craver.
To participate, meet at Veterans Memorial Plaza at 8:30 a.m. on July 4. The children will need to be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
These changes were put in place with the hope of building participation and exposing more visitors to the Fourth of July celebrations and to Newnan’s historic downtown, according to Craver. “I want to invite people to come downtown the morning of July 4, cheer on the band, thank the public safety and military personnel for their service, and help celebrate the fourth of July,” he said.
“It’s a great piece of our collective history,” he added.
“We think it will be great,” said Collins. “We’re looking forward to it.”