JoAnn Butcher, the Bentley parade convener for many years, was satisfied with the result this year. “There were less dignitaries in cars,” she says, “but that is okay sometimes.”
This year many of the parade entrants tried to tie in with the theme picked by the Bentley & District Agricultural Society – Salute to the Bentley District Fire Department.
This year an added bonus to the approximately forty minute parade was having two marching bands instead of the customary one.
“Bands are hard to book,” Butcher says, “as many are closed down for August, or are too busy already, or are too expensive for Bentley.” She is already looking for next year.
Donations helped the Sunset Hills Riding Club, the ones who sponsor the parade, with the cost.
For 2014 Butcher was able to confirm the 30-member Rocky Mountain Marching Pipe Band from a summer camp west of Cochrane that came last year, as well as a 60-member Penhold Cadet Marching Band that had come a number of different times in past years. It will be their last time here because the Penhold cadet camp has been closed down and next year cadets are going to a camp in British Columbia instead.
RCMP in their red serge led off the parade.
Alberta Downs race horses hooked to their sulkies were an added colorful feature, as were the Electric Strides Drill Team from Red Deer astride their pink sparkling decorated mounts. A lot of the usual parade entrants were back.
Collecting candy along the parade route remains a draw for the youngsters.
Volunteer judges that Butcher had lined up, again picked their favorite entries in various categories at the parade’s assembly point by the curling rink.
Judged Best Overall parade entry was the Bentley Beauty Salon.
Section winners are listed below.
Best Municipal Float: the city of Red Deer
Best Municipal decorated vehicle: the town of Eckville
Best Decorated Vehicle and Best Overall – the Bentley Fire Department; Best Decorated Float – the Bentley Care Centre; Best Novelty with horses included – Electric Strides Drill Team.
Best Decorated Float & Overall – Bentley Beauty Salon; Best Decorated Vehicle – Koda’s Country; Best Novelty – Bentley AG Foods.
Category with Horses:
Light Horse Drawn Vehicle & Overall – the entry of Dave Hueppelsheuser and Al Watson; Best Club – Electric Strides Drill Team from Red Deer; Individual Costumes – Keith Kendrew; Western Dressed Individual – Rimbey Rodeo Queen Martina Holtkamp; Novelty with Livestock – Daniel Rogers on Wild West Willy; Matched Pairs – Doug Rogers.
Antique Vehicle Section: Cars and Best Overall – 1929 Model A coup of Terry Raymond; Truck – John Parson’s 1929 Model AA; Farm Machinery – Leonard Skjonsberg’s 1951 Model Z Minni Moline tractor; Classic Car – Harvey Rue’s 1955 Ford Crown Royal; Classic Truck – Derek Dickau with the Bentley Ag Society float.
Best Decorated Bikes, Trikes, Vehicles – Bentley Minor Baseball.
Pet Section – Alberta Donkey and Mule Club.
Novelty (no horses): the wagons and quads of Dave Hueppelsheuser and Al Watson.
Parade announcer at the downtown midway point was Mark Smale from Eckville.
Butcher is hoping someone else will take over as parade convener.
She says, “Someone else will have to take it over (planning and organizing the parade and all that goes with it) in the next couple of years, but no one wants to do it.”
Butcher would be a very hard act to follow. She has all the contacts and the expertise of years of experience! She also helps out with the rodeo.