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Palisades Fourth Of July Parade Marches On

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The Palisades Parade features dancers, drummers, horses, homemade floats, local politicians and awards.
Jessica Gould
The Palisades Parade features dancers, drummers, horses, homemade floats, local politicians and awards.

Max Merriman, George Washington look-alike

"The first parade that I ever attended was in 1966 when I was about six or seven years old. But in the last 10 years or so I think it's been, I've actually been taking part in the parade. And I became George Washington all of a sudden. And Maryanne Mack, who's been Martha Washington for decades, I guess, I was her new George Washington because her husband had just died the previous year.

She and I would walk together and she had everybody convinced that she was Martha Washington. Her costume, the look on her face, the white hair, she had them sold. I, on the other hand, even though I had a costume on, they kept asking me, who are you? What are you doing? And I would have to identify myself constantly during the parade, and I still didn't have them convinced. They always looked at her."

Beth McKinney, Martha Washington look-alike

"So I bought a new Martha Washington costume because Maryanne had taken hers with her to Florida and I marched by myself last year as Martha Washington in the parade. And it was fairly well received, I think. Someone who was an older member of the church, she came out of the crowd to me and said, you know, you're going to have to do this for the rest of your life. And I said, yeah, I figured, but it's a lot of fun."

Mary Cheh, D.C. Council member

"Well, my history goes way back. We've been in Washington since the late 1970s. Of course, it changed a little bit when I got elected to the council and even when I was just running for the council, because it's a must-attend, particularly for the Ward 3 representative. But all of the politicians from around the District come, typically. And oddly enough, that doesn't, you know, ruin things."

Andy Mollison, Palisades Village President

"It used to be you had kids and grandkids and you might all live within a half-mile, mile of each other. The kind of world we have today, families are scattered, not just across the country, but across the globe, and that sometimes can make it a little hard to hold a sense of community together. Now, what the parade does is offers everybody a chance to get together, meet each other, say hi to their neighbors in a noncommercial context."

Bill Slover, Palisades Citizens Association President

"Anybody can come, anybody can march in it. We don't take applications. You don't register for it. You just -- if you feel like you wake up the morning of the 4th of July and you want to march in the parade, then come on down to White Haven Parkway and we'll get you in the parade and you can march."

The Palisades Parade is on July 4, starting at 11:00 a.m. at the corner of White Haven Parkway and MacArthur Boulevard.

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