Copper Harbor Lighthouse

Copper Harbor Lighthouse

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The 4th: The Big Parade

You've been looking forward to this post for a year, haven't you? You know you want to see what we did for the Copper Harbor parade again, right? Well, Steve decided we'll no longer use the golf cart in the parade (even though it came in real handy for zipping around to all the gift shops in town after the parade). He wants to use the Corvette from now on. That presents a challenge, as we obviously can't adhere tape to that beautiful "Anniversary Red" Corvette paint job. We didn't spend enough time thinking about the decorations this year, as we have construction details on our minds. However, I did get some red/white/blue garland on sale at Menards last summer, and I found some patriotic static clings and 2 new mini flags when we were back there in May. We also purchased 5 bags of Double Bubble and 3 big bags of Tootsie Rolls to throw at/to the kiddies along the parade route. Steve couldn't wear his Uncle Sam hat this year. It sheds glitter, and we wouldn't want that all over the interior of the car. No problem. I found a nice bow tie for him instead.

We awoke on the 4th to another gorgeous day in da Harbor. That's what the locals call it. 
For example: 
"What you doin' for da 4th?"
"We're gonna camp at da Harbor."
"Sounds fun. We're stayin' at da Bella Vista."

We took about an hour to decorate the Corvette, as we were just winging it with the design. Our patriotic banner has grommets, so Steve tied it onto some hooks in the trunk. The grommets were covered with tape to prevent them from scratching the paint.

Even though the Vette sits very low to the ground, it was still a little difficult to notice the text. We'll be sure to lower the banner next year.

We taped the garland inside the doors, hood and trunk.

The static clings worked well, as they could be adhered to the windows and the paint without doing any damage.

All ready for her glamour shots!

That was when she looked her best. Even though parade speed is quite slow, it was windy enough at some places in da Harbor that the garland blew around quite a bit. It would catch on the side mirrors and blow inside the car occasionally. As we drove to the line-up location, we realized that the USA banner on the windshield wanted to flip up (even though we had tape underneath it). When we were waiting for the parade to begin, we taped it down along some of the edges with the only tape we had in the car. Unfortunately, it was green. The clear tape was back in our motel room. Oh well, we decided most people wouldn't even notice the tape, since we would be throwing candy.

I had a camera along, as I was hoping to photograph some of the parade from our point of view, but Marty and Donna were watching the parade from the street, and Marty snapped some photos for us to share with you. Here's the beginning.


There we are! It looks like we have a backseat, and Uncle Sam is standing up in it!

The chicks in the Jeep behind us were wearing Mardi Gras masks and throwing beads. That's a little odd. 

By the way, that Jeep is way too close to us, and the driver is not giving driving her full attention! We're lucky she didn't smack into us. You can tell that Steve has a lot of parades in his past. He knows how to leave a respectable distance between our vehicle and the vehicle ahead of us! OK, the boy in the next photo already has some candy in his bag.

Time to wave! 

Notice anything strange about that last shot? Other than the two occupants? When Steve got back in the car at the line-up location, he shut one of the strands of garland in the door! Wish someone had told us about that.

Oh, did you catch Steve's bow tie in the last photo? Cute, huh? Here we are again. 

Did you notice that Steve was grabbing some candy to throw?

Did you notice the guy in the background? Smiling as he looked at the Vette?


Hey, there's another guy in the background looking at the Vette!

One more shot as we continued down the road.

And. . . three more guys in the background admiring the Vette.

I like this old truck - even though it's a Ford - and even though it was dusty. Tsk tsk.

The big fish makes an appearance every year.

This girl was peddling her little heart out on that trike - pulling a wagon full of stuffed animals.

Here's the family that owns and operates the Isle Royale Queen IV, the passenger ferry service to Isle Royale. Capt. John (the guy with the microphone) runs the July 4th afternoon games in the park for the kids. Not sure what he was saying here, but he's quite a character. I like how the man behind the wheel has his coffee cup in his hand.

Now, we'll switch over to the parade from our perspective. I'm sorry I don't have better shots, but the light wasn't at a great angle for photos through a windshield, and I was a little busy throwing candy at/to the kiddies most of the time.

Here's a good shot of Uncle Sam. He told us his name was Chris, so his full name must be Chris Sam - or Sam Chris. Right? He's been riding his unicycle in the parade for 12 years.

Uncle Sam in action.

At the center of town. The crowds got a lot bigger as we went along, but I don't have any photos showing that.

Turning right to go through the Lake Fannie Hooe Resort and Campground. This is where Uncle Sam gave up. He said he used to go the entire distance, but he's getting too old to do that anymore!

Now, we're going through the first of two campgrounds at Fort Wilkins Historic State Park. Candy is getting low, so we've started a strict rationing policy!

The girls on the Bella Vista Motel truck in front of us are running low, too.

That last photo was taken just before we saw our contractor and his family down on the right. Steve grabbed handful after handful of candy to throw at them! Hey, I thought we were rationing our supply!!! We made a turn around the bend to head back out of the campground.

The girls in front of us were now out of candy, and I was hoarding what little we had left. Just a piece here and there, as we still had another campground to go through.

OK, on to the last campground.

I think I had 6 pieces left when we hit this one. I gave those away to the tiniest tikes. When we came around the last curve, I had one piece left - and it was stuck on our wiper blade! Steve came to a stop, and I told one of the kids he could have it if he grabbed it off the windshield. So went the final piece!

The entire parade speeds up as we head out of the last campground and back into town. In all the excitement, Steve didn't notice that the majority of the parade participants avoided the main drag though town and took the scenic route along the shoreline to get back to the center of town. Marty was waiting along the shoreline with plans to take some video of us as we came through. 

Unfortunately, we never showed, as we took the non-scenic route back to the motel. Sorry about that. Come back in a day or two for more of what we did on the 4th of July.

All is well in the Keweenaw.

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