Grand marshals named
The DeSoto community has chosen Darrel and Ruth Zimmerman as grand marshals of this year's DeSoto Watermelon Festival parade.
"It's quite an honor," Darrel Zimmerman said Tuesday. "I feel like there are many people in the community more deserving."
The committee selected the names on the ballot, but parade committee chairwoman Pat Atchison said, left space for write-ins.
"We put the names on the ballots of the people we thought were deserving," she said. "Our thought was if people had other suggestions, they could list names in the write-in space, and then we would reprint the ballots with that name. Nobody did."
Darrel said he did not yet know what vehicle he and his wife would ride in, but is hoping for a convertible.
As of Tuesday morning, the parade had 55 entries. But Atchison said that will not be the final figure.
"I had five more request this morning," she said Tuesday. "By the of the day, we may have 60 or 70."
The parade will start at 10 a.m., Saturday. Participants are asked to arrive at their starting points from 8:30 to 9 a.m.
Most of the parade's participants will join at DeSoto High School, 35000 W. 91st Street, but cars will enter the procession at the Baptist Church, 8655 Church, and horses at Lexington Trails Middle School, 8800 Penner.
From the middle school, the parade will travel north to 85th Terrace, east to Ottawa, north to 84th Street, east to Peoria, north to 83rd Street, east to Osage and south to the 84th Street before terminating at the Community Center.
Organizers will judge participants in four different categories: Bands, floats, horses and organizations. First place winners will receive $200, second place $100 and third place $75.