The Madison Heights Neighborhood Association’s old-fashioned 4th of July Parade and Picnic is back in person this year, after it was canceled in 2020 and 2021 because of the pandemic. It’s right neighborly and the whole city is welcome, organizers said.
“A beloved Pasadena tradition is back! Join your neighbors for the MHNA July 4th Parade & Picnic,” the MHNA said in a Facebook post.
Bill Doll, a Board member of the MHNA, said the parade kicks off at 11 a.m. at Euclid Ave. near Fillmore Street and ends in a block party at Euclid and Glenarm Street.
Before COVID-19, the MHNA has held its 4th of July parade annually years from the time it was first held in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Being a short parade, the organizers allow only marchers, bicycles, scooters and strollers, and a few motorized vehicles to join.
“The parade is usually dominated — in terms of participants — by kids. So besides the Grand Marshall, there’ll be kids and their parents,” Doll said. “We encourage everybody to dress up, decorate their bikes or scooters, or what have you, or strollers. That’s what we’re anticipating.”
At the end of the parade, a Pie-N-Burger food truck will sell food, although participants in the parade can bring their own picnic basket.
“We’ll have games and crafts for the kids, music, and lots of fun,” the MHNA said.
This year’s Grand Marshal at the MHNA parade is Pasadena City Councilmember Andy Wilson, who’s retiring from elected office.
The parade traditionally features a local color guard, school bands, scout troops and a swarm of local children on bicycles decorated with American flags.
In previous years, the Pasadena Police and Fire Departments have sent their officers and firefighters to join the parade, and at one time a Pasadena fire truck was on display as staff spoke with children about their work as public safety first responders.
The last time the parade was held in person was in 2019, when then Pasadena Police Chief John Perez was Grand Marshal.