Saturday, July 3, 2010

An Old Florida 4th of July parade and a kissable pig!

I'm fortunate enough to live in a pretty good spot in Florida. We live within 45 minutes from all the major attractions, beaches, space center, malls and theatres. But where we live is quiet and rural and is one of the few towns that hasn't fallen prey to the grip of big developers. Today was our annual 4th of July parade and I took the boys to experience it for their first time.

It was wonderful, nostaligic, quirky, entertaining and so old-Florida. People not from Florida think we're all about beaches, but the middle of the state is full of Florida crackers - countryfolk who ride horses, drive tractors and aren't afraid to fly a confederate flag. It's a whole 'nother world!

I thought you'd enjoy some photos from today's parade. It might be a little different from how things roll where you are.

My dad would have loved the low and loud flyovers by the Spruce Creek Gaggle flying club. It was really amazing to see and hear them flying over the parade route.

What's a parade without some kooky old ladies having fun? And then you've got your decorated ATVs and airboats and people riding fake gators. It's all very normal.

This guy was wearing a chicken hat that flapped and clucked. I must get one of these immediately. Then we had some square dancers and the best decorated horse contest.

Once the parade was over the 4th of July festival began. There were pony rides for the kids, Southern food, bluegrass music and plenty of kids games.

Of course my younger boy was a pro at tossing the fake cow pie into the toilet. Three for three!

And I saved the best for last. The "Kiss a Pig" booth. If you kissed the pig you got a prize. I stuck around long enough to see that the prize was a pair of wax lips to give the pig a second free smooch. It really was hilarious to see all these people lining up to kiss this poor little black pig. Sadly I couldn't convince my boys to do it.

Hope you all enjoyed a peek into our small town's Independence Day parade! We're shooting off some fireworks tomorrow night and having a little BBQ so it should be a fun day! However, being British I tell my boys that we celebrate July 3rd too - the day that we decided we'd had enough and decided to turn this country over to the yanks so we could vacation here after they built it up and got it all civilized and such.



Ribbit said...

Very cute! I just love the pie in the pot!

Smaranda said...

You take some awesome photos! Thanks for sharing them with us and adding your great comments :)

Dani said...

Who do we gotta take down to get that hat?!

Susan said...

It's nice to see that "old Florida" is still alive and well. My favorite was the photo of the horse with the hat on. Thanks for sharing.

Darla said...


Shannon said...

Hi, I work for a local Magazine and we are doing an article on the Geneva 4th of july Celebration. The title of the article is "Geneva, Florida Celebrates the 4th of July, the Old Fashioned Way". I was wondering if i would have permission to use some of your photos for this 1 page article. Please email me ASAP as we go to press on Friday June 17th, 2011.


Kate and Crew said...

I'd be glad to talk to you about using the pics, but the email address you listed is an invalid address ...

Dorothy Hardee said...

Hope you will share the news about our upcoming 4th of July Parade & Festival. This year we are going for a "Small Town, Big Deal" theme. I have included the press release below. Thank you for sharing.


The public is invited to this patriotic village to enjoy a Norman Rockwell-like experience guaranteed to become a holiday family tradition.

As in years past, the 4th of July celebration in Geneva, Florida will make you think you’ve stepped back in time, as this close-knit community really knows how to get together for some real old-fashioned fun. When Geneva’s Independence Day parade kicks off with its red, white, and blue festooned tractors, horse and buggies, classic cars, local kids on bikes, and impressive patriotic floats, flag waving onlookers area sure to get a taste of what life was like long ago. One can almost see the American icon, Norman Rockwell, sitting on the curb in front of his easel, paintbrush in hand, getting ready to capture the colorful spectacle on canvas.

The friendly residents of Geneva, a small village east of Orlando, take pride in preserving the past, and the 4th of July activities are testimony to their efforts. Festivities begin at 9 a.m. with a classic car show to get you in a nostalgic mood. The official start of the parade occurs at 10:00 a.m., led by vintage cars and trucks taking you back to the “good ole days” followed by antique aircraft roaring over the crowd (weather permitting). The airplane formations are guaranteed to give you goose bumps, when local pilots dip their wings in salute to all gathered for a day of fun.

Along with the uniquely themed floats showing their “Small Town, Big Deal” interpretation, don’t miss the horses painted red, white and blue, and sporting hats, glitter, and patriotic riders, while miniature ponies pull teeny little wagons. Motorized vehicles range from antique cars and old tractors to motorcycles and fire engines. The trip “out east” is well worth the drive. It’s not too late to submit your float entry! It costs you nothing & is loads of fun! Who knows, you might even win a prize. Go to to register your entry.

Following the parade, everyone is invited to a community festival with home-cooked food, old-time games, a cakewalk, pony rides, 50/50 raffles, dulcimer gathering and tours of the museum and Rural Heritage Center. All these activities, and more, end at 2 p.m., so there’s plenty of time to attend your favorite local 4th of July Fireworks Show after dark.
Most of the action takes place on First Street or the vicinity. Just follow the crowd.

Geneva Community Center Address: 161 1st Street Geneva FL 32732
Antique Car Display: 9 a.m. at the Geneva Elementary School parking lot.
Parade Begins: 10:00 a.m., starting at the First Baptist Church on First Street.
Cost: FREE
Parking: FREE

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