Green was new pink at Cherry Blossom parade

hgoodridge@macon.comMarch 17, 2013 

Sunday’s Cherry Blossom Festival parade was probably the greenest pink celebration ever.

Falling on St. Patrick’s Day, the spectators were donned in equal parts green and pink.

“The parade has always been around St. Patrick’s Day, but I don’t remember if it was ever on the day,” said Charlene Churchwell, who attended the parade with her husband, Donnie Wayne, and grandchildren Belle, 5, Emory, 10, and Packy, 6.

The family was all decked out in green shirts, hats and beads.

“I think the green has it today,” Churchwell said.

Jake Ferro, Cherry Blossom Festival president and CEO, thought the colors meshed well together.

“It’s a nice touch,” he said after the parade. “Green is pink and pink is green.”

Ferro estimated crowd attendance at 4,000 to 5,000. “It was a very nice Cherry Blossom parade with the overcast sky,” he said.

East Coast Concessions was selling tons of green merchandise during the parade; green hats, green boas, green horns and beads. And they were making lots of green in the process.

“We’re selling really good,” said Greg Tifton as he pushed his cart down Cherry Street stopping every few seconds to sell a toy or gift. “We come here from South Carolina every year ... it’s a great crowd and people are friendly.”

The parade featured the usual suspects; high school bands marching in step and in tune with big sound, fire trucks blaring horns and sirens, car clubs roaring the engines of their Mustangs and Corvettes and beauty queens and dignitaries waving to the crowd.

No doubt among the best sound -- albeit the lowest volume -- was internationally renowned violinist Robert McDuffie, the parade’s Music Grand Marshal. The convertible he was riding in was directly behind Twiggs County High School marching band. The thumping of drums and blaring of horns didn’t stop him from quietly bowing his violin.

To contact writer Harold Goodridge, call 744-4382.

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