“Around the World in 80 Days,” the theme for this year’s Pioneer Reunion float parade, gave participants plenty of inspiration on which to base their creations. Parade goers on Friday and Saturday were presented with everything from a dolphin that sprayed water to a representation of the USS New York, a battle ship built of scrap iron from Ground Zero.
Parade Partners Division
In the Parade Partners Division, comprised of four self-propelled floats each year, “Faces of Africa”, dedicated in memory of Dee and Mable Roberts, won the Pioneer Award. Riding on the foat was Devon Kennard, son of Deanna Galliton and grandson of W.C. and Helen Galliton. “Arabian Nights”, sponsored by Waurika Cattle Company, won the President’s Award. Riding the float were Dustin and Summer Dean. The First national Bank of Byers sponsored the fourth Parade Partners float entitled “80 Days, Many Ways”, featuring many ways of travel.
The First Baptist Church float “Taking the Gospel and Good News”, also self-propelled, won the overall Spirit Division Award. Riding on the float was Larry Williams.
The Henrietta Junior Class took first place overall in the school division with “Flying High – U.S. Air Force. Class favorites are J.J Ramos and Parker West. The seniors won second among Henrietta’s school floats with “Lost City of Atlantis”. Class favorites are Katie Coleman and Cole Hollar. The freshmen won third with “Route 66”, featuring favorites Kristen Riddle and Timmy Duke. The sophomores were fourth with “Holland: Land of the Windmills. Class favorites are Addison Wade and Clayton Hoff.
Among the floats built by Bellevue students, the sophomore entry “Rain Forest” took first place and the overall special effects award. Favorites are Destiny Watkins and Brandt Cassetty. Second place among the Bellevue floats went to the freshmen with “U.S. Navy: Protecting Our Freedom Around the World”. The float featured a piece of the World Trade Center and a representation of the USS New York, a battle ship built from iron salvaged from Ground Zero. Favorites are Amber Bush and Broc Terry. Third place went to the Bellevue seniors with “Mardi Gras”. Class favorites are Aleshia Lawrence and Ethan Staley. The juniors finished in fourth with “Hawaii”. Favorites are Katie Specht and Joe Hankins.
The Sophomore Class took first place among the Midway floats with “China”. Class favorites are Marley Tate and Jordan Mass. The juniors won second with “Floating Down the Amazon”. Class favorites are Kelli Forester and Alan Self. The freshmen won third with “Taj Mahal”. Class favorites are Erin Armstrong and Jayson Castle. The seniors won fourth with “Venice, Italy”. Favorites are Callie Hewett and James Dunning.
“Sea World”, built by the sophomore class took first place among the Petrolia floats. Favorites are Hanna Heuring and Ryan Harrison. Second place went to the juniors with “80 Years of Making Dreams Come True: Disney World”. Class favorites are Shelby Knight and Seth Flowers. The seniors took third with “State Fair of Texas”. Favorites are Jamie Kowalick and Brady Mataska. Taking fourth place were the freshmen with “Balloon Festival”. Favorites are Kody Mataska and Caleb Dove.
Earning first place for Byers were the seniors with “Wild West”. Favorites are Holly Fleming and Tyler Parker. Second place went to the sophomores with “Hollywood”. Favorites are Cheyenne McLendon and Tylor Johnson. The freshmen took third with “Greece”. Class members are Katie Fox, Arecia Wheeler and Emily Harding. Fourth place went to the juniors with “Australia”. Class members are Taylor Dunn and Brandon Henson, both favorites, Sydney Daniels and Jonathan Wheeler.
Overall winner in the Novelty Division was “Mexico”, built in memory of Paige Payne. On the float were Conner Ulbig, Hunter Webb and Kinley Maxwell. Also entered in the novelty division were “Fishing Around the World” by Lake Arrowhead State Park, and “Sea World Adventures”, entered by Miranda Lambert and ridden by Kirstyn Barnard, Ireland Alexander and Talon Searcy.
Five children participated in the Henrietta Kiwanis Kiddie Parade. Fifteen-month-old Jackson Johnson won first place in the Pedestrian division with “Kiss me, I’m Irish”. In the non-motorized division, Michael Williams, 6, and Kaitlyn Williams, 11, took first and second with their bicycle entries. Jacob Klein, 2, paced first in the electric powered vehicles division with his John Deere Tractor and Elijah Baker, 4, took second place with his John Deere tractor and hot air balloon.