By Ray Balogh
AKRON — The Akron Fourth of July parade, themed “Together, We Rise,” drew a gratifying, robust crowd, as evidenced by the hundreds of spectators who lined scores of downtown blocks in 80-plus-degree weather hours before the procession began.
More than 50 entrants participated in the parade, which stepped off at 2 p.m. Sunday, July 4, east of Akron’s main intersection.
Participants in the 45-minute procession included a host of emergency vehicles from surrounding fire, EMS and law enforcement departments to lead the lineup, veterans groups, horses, marching bands, Corvettes and minicars, political candidates, farm equipment, civic organizations and several local businesses.
Winners were chosen beforehand in several categories:
• Floats: Parker & Sons Equipment, first place; Lake City Bank, second place; Mentone Flying Club, third place
• Antique and Classic Automobiles: Hoosier Old Wheels, first; DeLynn Geiger, 1930 Dodge DC8 sedan, second; Graham Geiger, 1948 Ford Super Deluxe, third
• Tractors: Fulton County Power Association, first; Echoes of the Past, second; Orville Reese, third
• Marching Units: Operation Christmas Child, first; Akron-Mentone Kiwanis, second; The Igloo, third
• Bands: Marching Amigos, first; Tippecanoe Valley High School Marching Band, second (only two units competing)
• Horses: Mid America Cowgirls Rodeo Drill Team, first; Miami Indians, second (only two units competing).
Other activities took place during the day at Pike Memorial Park:
• 10:30 a.m., community church service provided by Akron Church of God, Akron United Methodist Church and Casa de Renovacion
• Noon until completed, three-on-three basketball tournament
• Noon to 10 p.m., various food and retail vendors
• 7-10 p.m.,concert featuring the Copper Bridges band
• 10 p.m., fireworks sponsored by Henry Township Volunteer Fire Department
Following are some of the sights at the parade. Photos by Ray Balogh.