Basking in community spirit

Robert Blechl

BURBANK -- Jeremy Paluska was all set to participate -- until the

unthinkable happened.

"My saxophone broke two days before the parade," said the 15-year-old

Burbank High student. "I'm upset because I was supposed to march with all

my friends."

Nonetheless, Jeremy joined the crowds along Olive Avenue in support of

his comrades.

The 19th annual Burbank on Parade featured everything from school

marching bands to Mickey Mouse. This year's parade theme was "It's a

Brand New Day! Celebrating Community Spirit." The yearly event is a

tribute to the local businesses and community organizations that help

make Burbank a better place to live.

An estimated 8,000 to 10,000 people attended the parade and about

2,500 more were part of the event itself.

Parade President Sandy Dennis said the people behind the scenes

deserved much of the credit for this year's success.

"We have a list a mile long of things that are donated," Dennis said.

"And we had so many wonderful organizations that entered the parade. It's

great to sit back and watch."

Leading the two-hour procession was Boy Scout Troop 201 displaying the parade's theme banner. City Treasurer Jim Rogers was close behind in a

rumbling 1962 convertible Corvette, courtesy of the Road Kings car club.

Marching musicians from John Muir Middle School performed a medley

including "Louie Louie" while four biplanes from the Condor Squadron

soared overhead in a tight pattern.

State Sen. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank), U.S. Rep. James Rogan (R-Burbank)

and Assemblyman Scott Wildman (D-Burbank) waved greetings to

constituents.

Glendale resident Stefan Tonazzi, helping out Rogan for Congress, was

handing out free bottles of water to parched parade watchers.

"It's great to see the community come together," said Tonazzi. "We

usually only see it around Christmas, but it's nice to see it in the

middle of the year."

Ida Mary Bidwell called herself a "walking novelty." The Burbank

resident entered the parade solo and displayed a reproduction 1620

Pilgrim costume, which she created herself.

"I've been watching Burbank on Parade for many years and being that I

live here I decided I'd do it for my own city," Bidwell said. "I had a

great time."

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