Richard Budman: Patriotism, Unity and an Awesome Hometown Parade

Richard Budman

What a treat that was! The Santa Clarita Fourth of July Parade is an amazing and enduring symbol of what’s right with the Santa Clarita Valley, and it’s driven by a group of dedicated community members who are passionately patriotic and share a deep love for the SCV.

Sincere thanks to everyone who makes it possible, including Santa Clarita Mayor Laurene Weste (who serves as co-chair of the parade’s judging committee), Parade Committee Chair Linda Storli-Koontz, Parade Committee President Leon Worden of SCVTV, and the rest of the committee members and volunteers who make the Fourth of July such a special celebration in Santa Clarita.

For one day, we were all as one. We weren’t liberals or conservatives, Democrats or Republicans. We were — and are — Americans.

Thousands of SCV families lined the streets as the parade wound its way through Old Town Newhall, up Lyons Avenue and into Valencia at Orchard Village Road. Kids waved flags while their parents cheered patriotic parade entries ranging from the exotic to the inspirational to the quaint.

More than 25,000 spectators lined the streets, and approximately 3,000 people participated. Yet, it still feels exactly as it should: Like a small-town parade that’s short on expensive, fancy floats but long on heart and patriotism.

It’s an awesome hometown tradition that serves as a reminder of what a great community we have, and of the fact that, even though there are issues that sometimes spark discord and acrimony, this is a community that agrees more than it disagrees.

So, again, thank you to Weste, Storli-Koontz, Worden and the rest of the parade’s leadership team, and to everyone who participated — every flag-waving kid, every mom and dad, everyone who marched or rode in the parade, and everyone whose hard work helped our town continue an outstanding tradition that started more than 80 years ago.

The parade has stood the test of time, just like the all-American community it represents so well.

Richard Budman is owner and publisher of The Signal.

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