The theme of the parade “Freedom is not Free” was carried out in float themes, costumes and decorations. An honor guard of legionnaires carrying American flags led the parade followed by the Meigs Marauder Band playing patriotic selections.
Moving from Depot Street through downtown to the Beech Grove Road were a dozen or more floats, vintage automobiles, bicycles and four-wheelers, numerous walking units of scouts and ball teams, about two dozen horses, and of course, fire equipment from across the county.
It was an Independence Day marked with plenty to do, see, take part in, listen to and yes, eat, and once the parade was over the crowd moved to the Firemen’s Park to enjoy. There the scene was one of a carnival atmosphere, without rides, where booths lining one side were selling everything from body jewelry to blankets, from silly putty to pink plastic guitars, and games ranging from bingo to balloon busting were in full swing.
Wrestling matches and a martial arts program were also on the afternoon program.
Entertainment was provided by the “Oasis Christian Fellowship Band,” “Just Us,” a blue grass ensemble; and “Eye to Eye,” country and light rock.
Trophies were awarded to the trophy winners, listed first and second respectively: horses, Paige and Megan Cleland; four wheelers, MaKenzie Buzzard and Marrisa Keesee; religious floats, Rutland Church of God, Hysell Run Community Church; non-religious floats, Rutland Red Buckeyes, Rutland Minor Boys (Tim Caldwell); walking units, Kaden Robinson group, Boy Scout Pack 240; antique cars, Arnold Priddy and Sam Kemper.