Valerie Weld spent the entirety of the Fourth of July parade in Old Town Newhall on her feet, waving an American flag and wishing participants on all of the floats a happy Independence Day.
She was excited to see each and every person walk down Main Street, but she had to hold back tears when first responders drove by in their vehicles with sirens blaring.
Five months ago, her husband died. The important role that emergency personnel had played was still fresh.
“The first responders are the people that give us hope,” she said.
Thousands of others cheered along with Weld as people and vehicles filled the road in this year’s parade themed The Emblems of the Land I Love: Celebrating America’s Independence.
Since 1932, thousands of spectators have viewed the parade. This year, 94 entries of floats, cars, bands and groups entered the march.
Tina Ricard brought her children out for the Independence Day celebration and was excited to finally feel a sense of community.
“During this time, there has been a lot of turmoil in our country,” Ricard said. “This means we are coming together, celebrating our differences and how far we’ve come. “
For Robert Bean, the celebration makes Santa Clarita feel a bit like a small town.
“The kids are the ones that drag us out every year,” he said. “There is a hometown feel to everything. Something like the Fourth of July can bring out Santa Clarita to celebrate something that is bigger than all of us.
2017 Trophy Winners
2017 Parade Theme: “Emblems of the Land I Love”
2017 Grand Marshal: Veluzat Family of Melody Ranch
SWEEPSTAKES TROPHY Hart High: Home of the Brave
GRAND EQUESTRIAN TROPHY E.T.I. Corral 21
BEST OF THEME Prayer Angels for the Military
BEST DECORATED Fil-Am Assn. of SCV
HIGH SCHOOL DRILL OR FLAG TEAM 1. Canyon High School Cheer
COLOR GUARD 1. California Rangers 2. Vietnam Veterans Lost Patrol 3. L.A. Commandery No. 9
YOUTH GROUP (Non-Float) 1. Miss SCV Scholarship Program
COMMERCIAL FLOAT 1. Ekaterinberg Networking Group 2. Panorama Towing
NON-COMMERICAL FLOAT, UNDER 17 1. Cub Scout Pack 490 2. Cub Scout Pack 575 2. Spotlight Arts Center 3. Salvation Army
NON-COMMERCIAL FLOAT, OVER 17 1. Fil-Am Assn. of SCV 2. Hart High: Home of the Brave 3. Prayer Angels for the Military 3. SCV Senior Center
CLUB or FRATERNAL FLOAT 1. Vietnam Veterans Lost Patrol 2. Republicans of Santa Clarita 3. Cowboy Social Club
COMMERCIAL/SPECIALIZED VEHICLE 1. The Cornelius Family 2. Savannah Burrows 3. The Signal
CAR or MOTORCYCLE CLUB 1. SCV Corvette Club 2. SCV Antique Auto Club 3. SFV Model A Club
CLASSIC or ANTIQUE AUTO (Single) 1. Dr. Gregory Jenkins 2. Jerry Salinas 3. COC Trustee Steve Zimmer
MOUNTED GROUP, OPEN 1. E.T.I. Corral 21
PARADE HORSE, OPEN 1. Hayley, Jet & Friends
Samie Gebers is currently studying broadcast journalism at College of the Canyons. She reports on the weekends as well as produces video content during the week.