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Crowds cheer for Kiwanis 4th of July Parade

Original post made on Jul 5, 2010

Bands, colorful marching units and red, white and blue spectators enjoyed today's Fourth of July Parade in Danville presented by the Kiwanis Club of San Ramon Valley. Photos by Chris Scott/

Read the full story here Web Link posted Sunday, July 4, 2010, 11:04 PM

Comments (27)

Posted by Proud to be in Danville
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 7:38 am

I'm SO proud of Danville's Fourth of July parade. People from neighboring towns all come for it and it's a wonderful way to show off downtown Danville. I thought the 11am start was a bit late because not only was it more hot, it delayed the days' events - for people with kids it made for a long day and some couldn't attend the fireworks bc of exhausted kids). The pace of the parade was not kept well this year - there was a burst of excitement, then a long pause, then a burst of activity, then a long pause. We started packing up because we thought it was over but it was actually just an extra long pause. The veterans as always was the highlight for me, and the people who walked down with signs of "My Hero" - how touching. Overall, kudos and THANK YOU to the Kiwanis for making Danville citizens so so so proud! We look forward to 2011.

Posted by Parade goer
a resident of Blackhawk
on Jul 5, 2010 at 9:59 am

The pace of this years parade was off....

Besides that - two things must be addressed next year

1. To the people who come the day before (yes. 24 hours early ) and use colorful tape to block off a public street with their name, like the LEE family did in bright blue tape front of Amber Bistro, you should be fined for leaving their mess to be cleaned up by others. It's rude enough to do this , at least clean your sticky mess up!!

2. There should be enforcement along the route to stop the idiots who walk in the street IN THE MIDDLE of the parade, blocking the view if those watching AND disrepecting those IN the parade

Each year I see more and more disrepect by a few entitled locals. Lastly I don't think a hometown parade is the place for the Political hatred that was on display.
Shame on those who don't respect this town, state and our President

you know who you are.....

Posted by bz
a resident of Blackhawk
on Jul 5, 2010 at 10:39 am

The parade was just wonderful! Thanks to the participants and the staff for such an incredible treat! I particularly loved the entry honoring the heroes who are now serving in the military and those who have given their lives. This definitely causes one to stop and thank God for those people and their families. I also really appreciated the vets on cycles for their service. A great big THANK YOU!!

Posted by Cassie
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 11:53 am

I have stopped going to the parade the past few years, although it is wonderful, I am really turned off with the families that go 24 hours ahead of time and block off large areas on the street for themselves and their friends. They are ridiculous and snobbish and they drink and leave a mess afterwards. I'd rather go down to San Francisco for the 4th, where I don't see these people.

Posted by Agree
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 12:05 pm

" I am really turned off with the families that go 24 hours ahead of time and block off large areas on the street for themselves and their friends. They are ridiculous and snobbish and they drink and leave a mess afterwards. "

I agree 100% with you . Most of them talk loudly and only pay attention to the parade when their kid or friends pass by

Posted by Greenbrook Mom
a resident of Greenbrook Elementary School
on Jul 5, 2010 at 12:23 pm

Where was the Sycamore Lawnmower Brigade?? I thought the United Methodist Grill Team was a hoot. The St. Joan's float was very well done too. I enjoyed the fife and drum group, though it must have been very difficult for those young kids to play music and march in a colonial costume on a relatively hot day. Maybe they should have been on a wagon or trailer or something? The live music was great. And "Sentinels of Freedom" and "Blue Star Moms" and the veteran's groups did a really nice job. I was near the end of the parade and noticed 4 very lengthy gaps - unfortunate. But on the whole the parade was very, very nice and my family really enjoyed it. THANK YOU KIAWANIS!!!

Posted by danvilleexpress employee
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 1:13 pm

In regards to the gaps in the parade--in some instances the entrants were instructed to leave more space due to the fumes from some of the vehichles ahead of them. Also the same reason if there was competing music playing from a band or float.

Posted by Parade Participant
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 1:46 pm

I appreciate the effort put forth by the entire Kiwanis organization and all of the volunteer support groups that assist in this wonderful event.

As a participant, I was very disappointed with the sequencing of the parade entrants. It was communicated that different category types (marching units, floats, cars, dignitaries, etc.) would be staged separately and "someone" would be responsible for the "mixing" of entrants as the entered the parade. For example, a float would be released, then a marching group, then a dignitary, then a car, then the horses, then maybe another float...and so on. Yet, it appeared that this plan fell apart, resulting in certain categories being released in full (or in large part). I believe this caused the lapses mentioned by many attendees. It also appears this resulted in less variety with "back to back" similar entrant types.

I do think the "mixing" of entrants would have worked if the discipline to execute this plan was upheld – leadership?

I trust the organizers (thank you to all of these volunteers) have learned many things from this event. I look forward to next year's event and will look to volunteer, in addition to participating in my group's entry.

Posted by Marie
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 1:46 pm

I totally appreciate having a 4th of July parade in my hometown. I love the music, dancing, entertainment, and floats. Thank you to all of the volunteers who made this parade possible!

On the other hand…I can’t stand when my hometown shows its true colors by being disrespectful. Every year we hear about Danville residents marking their spots on the road, like dogs, but what really gets me angry are the parents. Danville parents are fortunate enough to have money and an education, but they don’t teach their children how to be decent human beings.

I can’t tell you how many times kids where in the middle of the road attacking the people who had freebies to hand out. Also, these kids stood 3 feet away from the curb in the way of the performers and sometimes the vehicles had to stop to wait for the kids to move. These kids stood on the side with their bags unsupervised as if the world belonged to them. When these kids were asked to move back, they just looked at you.

It is very easy to make the parade better by having more performers and fewer gaps in the entertainment, but it is very hard to change people who don’t think they need to change. I am disguised of how outsiders look at us (Danville residents). There is a reason why they think we are rude stuck-up snobs!

Posted by Gary
a resident of San Ramon
on Jul 5, 2010 at 2:07 pm

Have been enjoying the parade for years. In such a large production there are bound to be problems and I am always surprised at how fer of them there are. There have been many comments about the "people problems" but those are always with us wherever we are, especially in large events attracting crowds.

One great disappointment in this year's parade was the fact that the Star Spangled Banned was not played or, at least, not so it could be heard from where I was watching the parade. Also no America the Beautiful or othere patriotic music that I look forward to in the 4th of July parade. I hope that will work out better next year.

Posted by Agree
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 2:15 pm

"These kids stood on the side with their bags unsupervised as if the world belonged to them."

Well their lovely parents ( who scoped out "their" annual spot the night before, laid down tape to "mark" the area and tied together a bunch of chairs to be sure it was "theirs") have taught them that the world belongs to them.
There is one group of families we've witnessed for the last 3 years who stand around and drink/gab the whole time , never watch the parade while their darling kids stand on the sidewalk and spray paint their hair in everyone elses face - then run into the parade and grab stuff as they wish.

Posted by 15 Years Watching the Parade
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 2:21 pm

Although toward the end of the parade, I did hear the Sport Clips entry playing a number of patriotic songs, including the Star Spangled Banner and America the Beautiful.

Posted by Debora
a resident of San Ramon
on Jul 5, 2010 at 2:52 pm

I am sorry to say that we did not enjoy all the fun on the 4th but my sons and I had a great time driving down the street enjoying the sites of rows and rows of chairs the night before and got a good laugh. It looked like the martians came down and took all the people and left the chairs! Felt like we were on a set in Hollywood "Ghost Town of Danville". Thank you to all who put so much work into this parade and I am so happy to see that so many people make this an important day for their family and friends no matter if they are snobbish or not they are at least there for their town! Keep up the great work and don't listen to anyone who has a negative comment because it is what it is and you should just enjoy it!

Posted by Marie
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 3:12 pm

Nice point Debora, but we celebrate the 4th of July, in part, because of all of the men and women who fight to allow us to keep the right of freedom of speech! Personally, I would rather rid this town of all of the snobs, then we wouldn’t have anything negative to say! Danville is such a beautiful place to live, wouldn’t it be nice to have beautiful people (and I mean beautiful on the inside) as neighbors too?

Posted by Mary - a long time Danville resident
a resident of Danville
on Jul 5, 2010 at 5:47 pm

I love the parade, have been in it a few times, year's ago. I think the chairs going out the night before are ok. I like to drive down and see them. I think it's remarkable that no one comes and steals them. They did try this in Redwood City, but on the morning of the 4th, many chairs had been stolen. So Danville is still ok.
The Parade was great, but... WHY do people leave such a mess behind? There were many disposal tubs everywhere, but like in a movie theater, these slobs leave the stuff on the ground for the Scouts or whomever to clean up after them! Why?? Are they too drunk,lazy or just spoiled to take their gabage to the disposal container? Get with it Danville.. PICK UP YOUR TRASH NEXT YEAR. OK???

Posted by Lili
a resident of Alamo
on Jul 5, 2010 at 8:36 pm

The parade is such a fun tradition that we've enjoyed since moving to this area 5 years ago. We are proud of our town and its great spirit, but its politics can be a little trying.
First off, I couldn't agree more with those of you who've mentioned the obnoxious people who stake out their oh-so-precious spot well in advance of when it is permitted. This is what continues to promote the Danville stereotype of "get what you want, who cares about the rules?". I also agree that there shouldn't be ANY political, or for that matter, religious participants. It's just irritating. We're there to celebrate the birth of our nation, not to be subjected to the views of one political party.
Lastly, to those of you "parents" whose children charged like third-world orphans at the people giving away items: Teach your kids to take only ONE item! How many bags of fruit snacks does your chubby little Madison need, anyway?
All in all, it was nice to see our town gathered together to celebrate, and it was an honor to salute our veterans. We look forward to next year's parade.

Posted by jrm
a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Jul 6, 2010 at 8:30 am

jrm is a registered user.

My thanks to all the hard working volunteers that helped put together this wonderful event! I brought a friend visiting from New York and she had a wondeful time and was very impressed with our town. I am sure organizing this is a huge time comittment and I am grateful we have busy fellow citizens that create the time to pull this off. Ditto on the night before land grab, but whatever, it is what it is....we have the same dynamic at the Oak Hill Park concerts each Summer.

Posted by Gary
a resident of Danville
on Jul 6, 2010 at 8:46 am

I used to go downtown on July 3rd at 6 pm to stake a space enough for 3 lawn chairs for the 4th of July parade the next day. Sadly, it has become problematic that the 6 pm time is not adhered to by the over-the-top families who gobble up huge tracts of space along the route well before the 6 pm time. It's gotten way out of hand. I know there would have to be a ton of details worked out, but with today's financial crises for town/city budgets, I wonder if Danville could "sell" spaces on the street for the parade. Say, $50 for 10 feet of street, with a maximum of 2 parcels per family. I wonder how many of those over-indulgent neighborhood family/groups would pony up the money with that system in place? It would make the town some money, help pay for the clean-up, and keep it sane. Whether it would be by lottery, or whatever (like I said, many details to work out), everyone would have a fair shot at street space, and it would raise some much-needed funds, too.

Posted by Bonnie
a resident of Danville
on Jul 6, 2010 at 10:47 am

I love the parade, mostly the Military groups, from the Veterans to the newly honored soldiers that are now in the armed services.
I also think it's a hoot to see how early these people get out there with their chairs. That is all part of the charm and silliness of this hometown parade. My daughter is out of state at school and the one thing she missed this year was the Parade.
I would like to thank all the volunteers who organize this event and all the participants who walk, it was hot and they really did a wonderful job.
Thank you all and God Bless America that we can do this type of event.

Posted by pamela tallon
a resident of another community
on Jul 6, 2010 at 2:36 pm

Wow, what a great time we had at the Danville parade Sunday. We walked & rode with the wonderful people of SonRise Equestrian Foundation, and my daughter (Veronica) was thrilled to walk one of their mini horses the entire parade route.

Unfortunately, she had been sick for a day or 2, so the walk was a bit too much for her. We did not find this out until we were walking back to the car. She was hot, but not sweating, and thirsty, but coughing up the water she drank. My husband went to get the car while my exhausted 10-year old and I waited in the shade of trees at the high school. While there, some East Bay Park workers came around with a few horses they were trying to get away from some particularly loud paraders--I think they were a Veteran's group.

As I wiped cold water on Veronica's head, one of the workers asked me if she was ok. I told them my concern, and who did he happen to be but the 'first aide guy' for the EB trail! He had some electrolyte tablets in his backpack and we added one to a bottle of water for Veronica. She sipped it slowly as this nice man advised, and was soon feeling good enough to walk the short distance to where my husband was able to get thru to pick us up. But not before she was also given some colorful necklaces he had from the parade.

I just want to thank those people, who were at the right place at the right time. I did not even get their names, and I hope I am giving credit to the correct group (EB Parks/Trail).

So thank you for saving our day! We will be back, and we will pay it forward..


Veronica Tallon and family


Posted by Barbara
a resident of Danville
on Jul 6, 2010 at 3:13 pm

We loved the mini horses! Take care and I hope you come back next yr!

Posted by Jackie B.
a resident of Danville
on Jul 6, 2010 at 8:53 pm

Wow, I can't believe that staking out a place for your family to enjoy the parade in the shade because of the later start time has now equated to snobbish. I understand the complaints and it has gotten a bit crazy but lets not generalize and name call. If this is how people choose to spend their day before the parade, so be it. But don't complain. The rules were followed and the police and city workers were there to enforce the 6pm time.

Posted by Marie
a resident of Danville
on Jul 6, 2010 at 10:39 pm

Hello Jackie B. Go back and read the comments. The problem is that some people broke the rules. Don't expect your children to obey the rules nor the law if you break them right in front of young impressionable minds!

Posted by Jackie B.
a resident of Danville
on Jul 6, 2010 at 11:00 pm

The problem is Marie, I did read all of the comments and I wasn't commenting on parents that don't watch after the kids and don't set a good example. It was with the name calling and making a leap between saving space on concrete and snobs.

Posted by gary
a resident of Danville
on Jul 9, 2010 at 9:12 am

Jackie B., who are you kidding to say that "the rules were followed" in reference to the annual pre-parade July 3 chair plotting, and that city officials were there to "enforce the 6 pm time"? There was one city worker who passed by, and as soon as he did, the people came up behind him and moved their chairs from the side of the sidewalk back to the street. What a joke. The police also realized that they were way over-matched in keeping everyone to the time. I've given up on July 3 chair-plotting, it's just not worth it anymore.
Again, I suggest selling tracts along the route to raise much-needed civic funds. Then we'll see who comes out and ponies up the bucks to get front-row seats. Just like going to a 49ers/Raiders/A's/Giants/Cal/Warriors game -- You want to sit in front in prime seats? Pay more for it.

Posted by ParadeHappy
a resident of Danville
on Jul 9, 2010 at 9:59 am

For years, when my kids were really young, I would come down at the prescribed time to find that ALL of the space along Hartz Avenue downtown was already taken, and forget about a shady spot.

Our neighborhood treats the parade like an event. We all have younger children and enjoy the camaraderie of watching the parade together. So if we are to do this year after year, it means "if you can't beat em, join em." I personally spent 6 hours the day before on the route waiting for 6pm to put our groups chairs out. Before the deadline, our chairs were behind the sidewalk as required. Yes, some did not follow the rules, it happens every year.

The adults and children watched the entire parade together, and all the kids in our party (count 10) sat on the curb waving their flags and waited for those handing out items to come to them.

I like the idea of selling spots, perhaps in bleachers like the Rose Parade, for those not wanting to get involved in the chair madness. I think it is wishful thinking that families will not continue to reserve their spots, spending whatever amount of time they have to to ensure that their families have an enjoyable parade experience.

While we may not always agree on what is "appropriate," and may get irked at our neighbors occasionally, remember that we all are people and deserve respect. Calling names "snob," and the mention of "Madison" not needing more candies were uncalled for. Live, let live and be happy people. Tomorrow is promised to no one.

Finally -- THANK YOU to all the volunteers for this wonderful event, and to all who took the time to participate. On behalf of our quiet little street in Danville we say thank you and God Bless America.

Posted by agree
a resident of Danville
on Jul 10, 2010 at 11:25 am

The parade is great and I agree that it would be a great idea to sell space to raise money. I don't know where some of these people think they live but when I grew up and went to parades back east in my hometown you went to the parade in the morning and stood like everyone else. These snobbish people (and I know plenty of them) think that they own the town and everyone else is lesser than them and I know because I personally know many of them.

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