Warm Reception on a Cold Night
Though it was damp – too damp for my liking – my team and I here at the CV Weekly couldn’t be swayed from climbing aboard the Crosstown Towing flatbed to be a part of history – specifically, the 36th annual Montrose Glendale Christmas Parade.
Lisa and Arnold own the towing company and donate their rig each year for us to use for the parade. This past year, they had LED lights installed under the flatbed that really showed up nicely with the garland and mini-Christmas lights that we strung across. Thanks to Jay Eatherton and Eli Locke – two of our strongest paper delivery guys here – who loaded bales of hay aboard the truck for us all to sit on. Like they have for the past several years, Dave and Jen Meyers allowed us to use their generator to power up the mini-lights, white frame Christmas tree and any other sparkly thing we could think of that needed plugging in. Once finished, we climbed aboard for the ride down Honolulu Avenue.
If you saw us pass by, you might have noticed some new faces on our “float.” Sales diva Lisa Stanners was a trooper, trying hard to ignore the heavy mist. Our office manager Lisa Mitchell, on the other hand, didn’t seem as concerned with the weather though she did chastise us later for not telling her that she looked like a “raccoon” due to runny mascara (I, for one, didn’t notice). There was also room for weather watcher Sue Kilpatrick and husband Doug – their first time waving to the crowd. Designer Matt Barger and his son Mario, despite not typically being in the spotlight, fared well, returning every wave with a smile. Special thanks for CV Weekly photographer Jason Ballard for snapping pics of most every entry.
There were repeat CV Weekly riders, too – sports writer Brandon Hensley, saleswomen extraordinaire Kim Mekelburg and Lisa Yeghiayan, ace reporter Mary O’Keefe, designer Steve Hernandez plus more. And Charly Shelton and Sabrina Walentynowicz kept alongside the float on roller blades, Sabrina outfitted in a CV Weekly newspaper “skirt.”
The overwhelming sense of pride that I have felt every year since 2009 – the first year that the CV Weekly was in existence and the first time in the parade – was rekindled as we made our way down Honolulu. Seeing so many people lined up and hearing the repeated shouts of “We love the paper!” and “Thank you!” was humbling.
Once we made our way back to the office, it was time to change hats and banners. The Prom Plus Club kids, who had done so much of the decorating of the float, now helped remove the CV Weekly banners and install the Prom Plus banners before climbing aboard for their ride down Honolulu.
Lisa Y., Mary and I are all officers with Prom Plus, so we joined the 20 or so kids on the float for a second run down Honolulu. This time around was a bit more wet and, unfortunately, colder. Whereas earlier it wasn’t that cold at all, by the time Prom Plus waited in line for our turn (just ahead of Santa) the temperature had definitely dropped and I was eager to get back to the office and a hot cup of coffee.
The affection that we all feel for the Montrose Glendale Christmas Parade was apparent on Saturday by everyone who ignored the weather, bundled up and either waved from the curb or from aboard a homemade float. The amount of work by volunteers, organizers and supporters is what makes this such a highly anticipated event. I am privileged to be a part of it and look forward to it every year.
With the ongoing support of this community that I love, CV Weekly will again be riding down Honolulu Avenue in 2013.