It seemed to be a record crowd to watch the floats, motorcycles, 4-wheelers, walkers, three marching bands, color guard, a military convoy, antique vehicles, tractors, police vehicles, rescue vehicles, fire trucks, Big Lake Refuge air boat, members of the Herman Davis Post 197, horses, and more that took part in the Manila parade held Saturday, Dec. 1.
A bandstand and bleachers were placed on Main Street near Southern Bancorp and the crowd enjoyed a live Christmas concert performed by the Bryant family. The Morris family had funnel cakes and other refreshments. The First Baptist Church sponsored free hot cocoa at the Higher Ground building on Main Street.
The Grand Marshals for the parade were World War II Veterans with Art Slaton and Wesley Crouse representing the World War II veterans.
The Osceola High School ROTC presented the colors and three marching bands, Manila, Cooter, and Gosnell, offered Christmas songs.
Floats included Adams' Candy Cane float; Nucor's Grinch; The Cat in the Hat by Bertha Ray; New Providence Baptist Church; Luxora's Fire Department cancer awareness float; Burdette Fire Station's Tug Boat float; the Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, Leachville Girls Scouts, a Veteran's float by Kay Staggs; Santa Claus float sponsored by Southern Bancorp.
Keeping with the tradition of the theme, the National Guard provided several military vehicles in the parade.
Members of the parade committee include Susie Baker, Sherry Pratt, Donna Jackson and Larry Miller. Manila city hall staff helped with the line-up.
All of the full size floats received a $50 gift.
Members of the parade committee expressed their appreciation to everyone who helped make the parade a successful event.