‘Avenue of Roses Parade’ dodges raindrops

See folks having fun – as the rain stopped just as the 2019 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade began, in outer East Portland …

In the Lents neighborhood, checking this year’s parade entrants in, are Kathryn Notson and parade organizer Nancy Chapin.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

With dark clouds delivering waves of showers on the morning of April 27, it looked as if the 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade might proceed, for the first time ever, in the rain.

But, a mere five minutes before the parade stepped off from the parking lot of the Century Eastport 16 Theater, the rain stopped. And there was no more rain that morning, as the 12th annual two-mile parade, presented by PDX Bridge Festival, along SE 82nd Avenue of Roses began.

-2 Ready to announce the parade are perennial presenters Patrick Provant (who took this selfie), and Eric G. Norberg, editor of Southeast Portland’s THE BEE newspaper.

Entrants of all kinds, representing the diversity of the greater Portland area – with some of them previewing Portland Rose Festival events – delighted spectators who gathered along the route of this year’s parade. Its theme this year was “Roses in the Heart of Portland”.

Here comes the 2019 82nd Avenue of Roses Parade!

Portland Police Bureau East Precinct Acting Commander Tasia Hager rides ahead of the parade’s Color Guard, from Lents Post 1412 Veterans of Foreign Wars.

The Portland Rose Festival Clown Prince, Angel Ocasio, rides with a friend, while the Rose Fest Clown Ally gather for a quick team photo during the parade.

Smiling and waving, as he walks the parade route, is Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler.

Among elected officials in the parade, Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler walked the route, greeting those along the way.

“This is great!” Wheeler told East Portland News. “This parade brings the community together with businesses, neighbors and more neighbors coming from all over the place to celebrate what we are as a community.

“I love the diversity in this neighborhood … with people of different backgrounds and different ‘lived experiences’ coming together and just having fun. In this day and age, this is something that we should do more of – come together and have fun that’s how we get to know each other,” said Wheeler said, as he strolled along the parade route.

New to the parade is crowd-pleaser – and America’s “Clown of the Year” – Cha Cha the Clown.

Greeting the crowd is Portland City Commissioner Amanda Fritz.

“The Beat Goes On” marching band fills the avenue with lively music.

Actors with the Fear Asylum add a macabre touch to the parade.

Churches, schools, community groups, nonprofit organizations and commercial concerns entered this year’s parade.

“This year, our parade featured 56 entrants – and, a total of about 600 participants walked, rolled or rode in the parade!” exclaimed parade organizer Nancy Chapin. “It was so much fun for me to, for the first time, actually ride along the parade route. From my vantage point, I estimate as many as 6,000 lined the parade route.”

The colorful, lively, Orgullo Morelense Cemiac dancers entertain along the parade route.

Fulfilling their mission of “Creating Community Through Brazilian Culture” is MARACATUpdx.

Participants from Choi’s Taekwondo Academy kick up their heels.

Members of the King School Lions Drill Team perform during the parade.

“We are already looking forward to the 13th Annual Parade on Saturday, April 25, 2020, so add it to your calendar now!” recommended Chapin.

© 2019 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™


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