Mayor Don Wesely was joined by Lincoln children today in announcing plans for the 16th annual Star City Holiday Parade, set for 11 a.m. Saturday, December 9 in downtown Lincoln. The theme for this year’s parade is "KidSize -- ‘cuz kids see things different!"
"The parade has always been about children, and this year, a special effort is being made to focus on what kids really like to see and do," said Mayor Wesely. "It will also give adults an opportunity to again look at the world through the eyes of a child."
Parade mascot Major Drummond was also on hand for today’s news conference at the new Children’s Museum, 1420 'P' Street. For the first time in its history, the parade will be judged entirely by children. Mayor Wesely introduced the six Lincoln children selected to judge through a random drawing earlier this week. They are Dillon Kortum (8), Meredith Lee (8), Zackery Niedt (9), Meghan Rihanek (11), Jessica Scanlon (12) and Shelby Urbanek (13). Two more children will be selected from Fairbury, this year’s Star Community. The judges will be seated at a reviewing stand at 14th and 'O' Streets and will be assisted by a police officer, a firefighter, a nurse and a pilot.
Wesely and Parade Board Chair Gloria Aron of Union Bank and Trust presented the judges with the first 'Parade Pin Pals.' The pins feature the parade logo and date and come with coupons which can be redeemed at Lincoln businesses. US Bank provided the funding to make 5,000 pins available at no charge to area children.
Parade Pin Pals will be distributed Saturday, October 28 at the Lincoln Journal Star booth at the 'Boo at the Zoo' event at the Folsom Children’s Zoo. ('Boo at the Zoo' runs from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Thursday, October 26 through Monday, October 30, but the Parade Pin Pals will be available Saturday only.)
Pins will also be available beginning Monday, October 30 during regular business hours at the Mayor’s Office, 555 S. 10th Street; the Downtown Lincoln Association in the Atrium, 1200 'N' Street, Suite 101; the downtown US Bank office, 233 South 13th; and at local radio stations.
The parade has traditionally been held the first Saturday in December, but it was moved back one week this year to avoid conflicting with the Big 12 football championship game December 2. The date change allows UNL’s Cornhusker Marching Band to make plans to perform in the parade.
The Executive Director of this year’s parade is Julie Lattimer, who also directed the parade from 1988 through 1992. Beginning November 6, more information about the Star City Holiday Parade can be found by clicking on "events" on the Downtown Lincoln Association’s web site.