Yamboree Queen's Parade held under blue skies
by MARY L. KIRBY
Oct 25, 2012 | 1762 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Courtesy Photo / Ruel Felipe<br>
READY TO DANCE are the participants on the first place winning float in the Queen’s Parade Saturday. Using the theme, “American Song and Dance,” the Lions Club float carrying Lady Chelsey Alexander and escort Brady English incorporates the American Bandstand with dancers on the float and girls wearing the iconic felt skirts along side.
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The 75th annual Queen’s Parade of the East Texas Yamboree opened under crystal blue skies with perfect Yamboree weather greeting the thousands who gathered to celebrate the festival, which begun in 1935.

Queen Mary Paige Linder and her escort, Jackson McQueen, opened the parade, preceding the greatest assemblage of queens and presidents ever. Accompanying the Queen was the Gladewater High School band, the first appearance of the Bear Band in the Yamboree in a number of years.

In all, there were 131 entries to the parade, making it perhaps the longest ever, as it took well more than an hour to wind past any point along the parade route, which was thickly lined with people.

Lady Chelsey Alexander and her escort, Brady English, danced away with “teeny boppers” to the theme of “American in Song and Dance,” the first-place entry in the Queen’s Parade, by the Gilmer Lions Club. The float picked up the blue of Lady Chelsey’s dress and featured children at a record hop, with outriders in the iconic felt skirt with petticoats.

Upshur Manor won the President’s Award among the commercial entries with “Our American Heritage,” with George and Martha Washington leading the float, which carried iconic American symbols, including the Liberty Bell, children in patriotic dress, and topped by Mount Rushmore.

Lady Michelle Yochum and the Kiwanis Club captured second place with “Fairyland.”

Princess Shelby Denise Hutto and the Rotary Club captured third place with the “Carnival of Venice,” complete with a gondolier leading the float into Gilmer.

The Iris Garden Club selected “A Salute to Broadway” for their theme with Lady Jasmin Jones arriving through an entry labeled “Dream Girls,” with several Dream Girls performing on the float.

The Twentieth Century Club celebrated its long association with the Yamboree by noting “A Moment in Time,” a float decorated with clocks with photos of past Twentieth Century Club Queens’ portraits replacing the numbers on the clocks. Lady Kayla Smith was joined by several children in formal wear on the float.

Lady Emily Chevalier and her escort Slade Morris arrive at a Mardi Gras-style ball, where the children wore masks on a float decorated in the lime green of Lady Emily’s dress, purple and gold, and a Mardi Gras-style mask rotated at the front of the float.

The success of the parade mirrored the success of the Yamboree as a whole.

Gilmer Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director said income from the carnival, of which the chamber gets a share, set a record once again this year.

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