Parade entries due June 30 | VailDaily.com

Parade entries due June 30

VAIL, Colorado – Entries for Vail’s Fourth of July parade are currently being accepted through June 30 by organizers of the Vail America Days celebration. The parade will be held from 10 a.m. to noon on July 4. The theme for parade entries is “Made in America.” Vail’s parade is one of the most popular events during the Independence Day holiday, attracting thousands of spectators from throughout the region. Application forms are available on the town of Vail website at vailgov.com. Entries are available in seven categories: youth, marching, equestrian, motorized, merchant/business, float and most original. Fees vary from $50 for a nonprofit to $200 for a business entry. The parade will begin at Golden Peak and continue west to Hanson Ranch Road, north on Bridge Street, west on Gore Creek Drive, north across the International Bridge, west along Meadow Drive and finally through the Lionshead Mall to the finish. Volunteers are needed to help organizers keep the parade moving. Duties include holding balloons, carrying banners and assisting with traffic. Call the Vail America Days staff at 477-3699 or JoAnn Moore at 926-2177 for details.

Vail photos: Parade for America

Vail America Days Fourth of July parade registration open

VAIL — Entries for Vail's annual Fourth of July parade are currently being accepted by event organizers and are due by 5 p.m. on June 22. This year's parade will start at Golden Peak at 10 a.m. on July 4 and will wind its way through Vail Village, ending in Lionshead. The theme for the parade is "Celebrate the USA! Great Moments in American History," providing guests and participants with the opportunity to celebrate the wide variety of historical moments throughout America as well as in the Vail Valley. Vail's parade is one of the most popular events during the Independence Day holiday, attracting thousands of spectators. Application forms are available at http://www.vailamericadays.com. Entries will be judged in seven categories: youth, marching/musical, motorized, float/mechanical as well as the most original, best in show and the Gallegos most distinctive award. Fees vary from $75 for a nonprofit float to $250 for a business entry. Volunteers Needed The parade will begin at Golden Peak and continue west to Hanson Ranch Road, north on Bridge Street, west on Gore Creek Drive, north across the International Bridge, west along Meadow Drive and finally through the Lionshead Mall to the finish. Volunteers are needed to help organizers keep the parade moving. Duties include holding balloons, carrying banners and assisting with traffic. Contact Highline at 970-476-6797, ext. 707, or by email to mackenzie@gohighline.com for more volunteering details. The Vail America Days celebration will feature fireworks at Golden Peak. In addition, there will be other events happening throughout the weekend, such as the annual patriotic concert. This year's parade will be limited to the first 60 entries to submit complete applications. For more information, visit http://www.vailamericadays.com.

Vail America Days parade entries sought

VAIL — Event organizers announced that entries for Vail's Fourth of July parade are currently being accepted through June 24 at 5 p.m. Vail's 50th Anniversary will be celebrated throughout the Vail America Days weekend. The Vail 50th-themed parade will start at Golden Peak at 10 a.m. on July 4 and will wind its way through the villages, ending in Lionshead. Vail's parade is one of the most popular events during the Independence Day holiday, attracting thousands of spectators. Application forms are available at the town of Vail Municipal Building or at http://www.vailamericadays.com. Entries are available in seven categories: youth, marching, equestrian, motorized, merchant/business, float and most original. Fees vary from $50 for a nonprofit to $200 for a business entry. Parade route The parade will begin at Golden Peak and continue west to Hanson Ranch Road, north on Bridge Street, west on Gore Creek Drive, north across the International Bridge, west along Meadow Drive and finally through the Lionshead Mall to the finish. Volunteers are needed to help organizers keep the parade moving. Duties include holding balloons, carrying banners and assisting with traffic. Contact Highline at 970-476-6797, ext. 108, or send an email to peggy@gohighline.com for more volunteering details. The Vail America Days celebration has been expanded to a four-day festival featuring spectacular fireworks, a classic town parade, live music and entertainment, children's entertainment and an open-air street festival atmosphere. For more information, visit http://www.vailamericadays.com or call Highline at 970-476-6797.

Vail America Days parade entries due June 24 by 5 p.m.

VAIL — Event organizers announced that entries for Vail's Fourth of July parade are currently being accepted through June 24 at 5 p.m. Vail's 50th Anniversary will be celebrated throughout the Vail America Days weekend. The Vail 50th-themed parade will start at Golden Peak at 10 a.m. on July 4 and will wind its way through the villages, ending in Lionshead. Vail's parade is one of the most popular events during the Independence Day holiday, attracting thousands of spectators. Application forms are available at the town of Vail Municipal Building or at http://www.vailamericadays.com. Entries are available in seven categories: youth, marching, equestrian, motorized, merchant/business, float and most original. Fees vary from $50 for a nonprofit to $200 for a business entry. Parade route The parade will begin at Golden Peak and continue west to Hanson Ranch Road, north on Bridge Street, west on Gore Creek Drive, north across the International Bridge, west along Meadow Drive and finally through the Lionshead Mall to the finish. Volunteers are needed to help organizers keep the parade moving. Duties include holding balloons, carrying banners and assisting with traffic. Contact Highline at 970-476-6797, ext. 108, or send an email to peggy@gohighline.com for more volunteering details. The Vail America Days celebration has been expanded to a four-day festival featuring spectacular fireworks, classic town parade, live music and entertainment, children's entertainment and an open-air street festival atmosphere. For more information, visit http://www.vailamericadays.com or call Highline at 970-476-6797.

Plum TV to air Vail parade live Tuesday

VAIL – Plum TV, Channel 16 in the Vail Valley, will be airing live coverage of the Vail America Days Parade on Tuesday. Following a special edition of its show “Morning Noon and Night,” Plum TV camera crews will be at the top of Bridge Street near Seibert Circle bringing viewers all the parade action. The parade begins at 10 a.m. In addition to filming the parade itself, Plum will interview participants and feature parade commentary by on-air hosts Erik and Kim Williams. “The parade is a truly memorable event and we are thrilled to capture it live for the Vail community,” Plum TV’s General Manager Shani Magosky said.Vail, Colorado

Vail celebrations attract thousands

VAIL — It's not uncommon to see large crowds in Vail, but it's only once per year we get to see so many people concentrated into one area. Thousands of people lined streets between Vail and Lionshead villages on Thursday for the Vail America Days parade, an annual Independence Day celebration featuring 80 or so floats, both comical and ceremonial. Driving a original World War II Willys Jeep, Edwards resident Buddy Sims said he was honored to be able to pilot the vehicle in salute of Maj. William Bird Mounsey, who always attended the Vail parade, but died last year. "He was one of the few guys in WWII who was given a star on his combat infantry badge, because he stayed in occupied Germany," Sims said. Sims, a veteran of the Vietnam War, was joined by fellow Vietnam veteran G.E. Scott and WWII vets Alan Aarons and Herb Rubenstein. "I'm 92 years old, I walk fine, but it's nice to be here in this Jeep with these guys," Rubenstein said. Not far behind Rubenstein and Sims was a relic from the post-WWII boom, a pristine red fire truck from 1953 that once belonged to Eagle County's Gilman Fire Department. Being a motorized event, vehicles like the Gilman firetruck were often as much of a sight to behold as the floats they powered. A 1966 Chevy Corvette driven by Vail local Bill Bain won the best motorized vehicle float. "They gave us a really nice plaque," said Bain. "I love it." 50th Anniversary themed Floats that recognized Vail's 50th anniversary were popular this year, with the Aukamp family driving a "five decades of fun" float and Ski and Snowboard Club Vail winning best youth float with their "50 years of awesomeness" float honoring ski racers like Lindsey Vonn, Sarah Schleper and Mikaela Shiffrin, who were members of Ski and Snowboard Club Vail before turning pro. Even the floats that were going for laughs — like Cordillera's disco-themed, multi-person bicycle — were peppered with shout-outs to Vail's 50th. Ten-year old Finn Dippy said the Trinity Church float was his favorite. "They take garbage and turn it into music," he said. And he meant it quite literally. Using old buckets, pails and piping, the Trinity Church group played a musical number, accompanied by dancers, to win the parade's musical marching award. Parade organizers tout the celebration as "one of Colorado's largest Fourth of July parades," a reference to both the parade itself and the crowds it attracts. Getting to the parade usually means joining a procession of your own on I-70. By 10 a.m. the interstate was a parking lot, with people in cars backed up to West Vail awaiting their opportunity to join the celebration. Decked out in red, white and blue Most of the parade-goers were outfitted in red, white and blue or some sort of USA-themed garb. Dressed in cut-off jean shorts, Vail Valley resident Robbie Prechtl said representing America with his dress was of paramount importance to him when assembling his parade getup. "I'm not sure if the idea to actually cut the jeans off well above the knee like this was of American inception, but we sure have taken to it," he said with a laugh. Parade regulars like Karen Conklin, who's been to every Vail America Days celebration since '96, said getting a seat picked out early is key. "We usually leave Eagle at 8 a.m. or so," she said. "We get here about 8:30 or 8:40 and try to set up a good seat near the front." But despite the fact the parade attracts many of the same faces every year, for those people the experience can vary considerably. Eleven-year-old Tatum Huffman, of Edwards, said even though she attends the event every year, she was looking forward to something different in 2013. "I'm usually in the parade with the BMHS dance team, so it's nice to be able to watch it as a spectator this year instead of participating," she said. The Vail America Days celebration continues throughout the weekend with concerts, athletic events, festival activities and more. For a complete schedule, pick up a copy of the Vail Daily Weekly or visit vailamericadays.com.

Vail council holds special meeting Thursday

The Vail Town Council will hold a special meeting at 4 p.m., Thursday, in the conference room of the community development department. The two discussion items are a further reconsideration of dates for a summer farmer’s market and additional funding for the Fourth of July parade. The council in March decided to include a July 4 date for the farmer’s market. Town Manager Stan Zemler recommended excluding that date from the schedule. The council will re-visit its March decision. The council will also examine its options to free up more funding for the Vail America Days celebration. The town’s Committee on Special Events had originally agreed to a proposal to provide $25,000 for this year’s parade. With costs piling up rapidly, Eagle Valley Events, the Eagle-based firm hired to promote Vail America Days, has requested more money. The council will examine its options for providing more money to the July 4 event.

Crowds pack Vail for Fourth of July holiday

VAIL — The star-spangled banner waived o'er the land of the free parking for Vail America Days on Friday, where thousands gathered to celebrate Independence Day. While the crowds were probably not as large as 2013 — 942 cars spilled over to the South Frontage Road this year, as opposed to nearly 1,300 last year — organizers said the event went about as smoothly as possible, with the parade running right on schedule and no major problems reported. "We didn't have any issues this year," said Sgt. Justin Dill with the Vail Police Department. "We're getting so many repeat people year after year, so now people are really starting to figure out how to plan properly and do it right," said event organizer Peggy Wolfe, of Highline Sports and Entertainment. An important component of proper planning for a large event like Friday's revolves around getting there early and finding a good parking spot; Kevin Berga with the town of Vail said the structures filled up quickly this year, with Vail reaching capacity just after 9 a.m. and Lionshead a half hour after that. Not included in Berga's spillover count were 350 vehicles in the Solaris lot, 80 on the North Frontage Road in front of Safeway and another 40-50 at Chamonix. "And we were only counting the legal ones," Berga said. Another 75 or so vehicles were illegally parked on the North Frontage Road between Middle Creek and Red Sandstone, which were ticketed by police. 'TEST RUN' New for this year was a post-parade "While Light Bash" at Solaris, which featured small bars interspersed throughout the plaza, along with games like gargantuan jenga and enormous Angry Birds. "I think it was a great idea," said Dani Hollander, manager of Solaris-based business The Blues Jeans Bar. "It's nice to see (Solaris) doing events like this that incorporate the community. I hope they do more." White Light Bash event planner Cati Miller said preparing the party wasn't easy, but she was pleased to see the way it went off. "It was a test run because nobody had seen it done, nobody understood fully about how the mechanics would work," Miller said Friday. "But everybody really came together and worked together very well." Playing the White Light Bash was the 101st Army Band's rock group Mile High 101, comprised of members of the Colorado National Guard who play wearing full military camouflage. It was their third year in a row playing at Vail America Days. "We keep coming back because the community here is so great," said Sgt. Brian Person, of Mile High 101. 'PARK HOPPING' Also new this year was a kids' closing venue at the recently constructed Sunbird Park in Lionshead. Consisting of three pods perched atop boulders and poles and connected by slides, rope bridges and nets, the location was filled with kids this year. The parade ended near that park, which left the area looking lively long after the parade had ended. "My kids just love this," said John Workman, of Greenville, North Carolina. "It's a beautiful structure." Workman said he and his wife, Vanessa, schedule an annual summer visit to Vail based on events like Vail America Days and Bravo! Vail, and they were having trouble pulling his kids — Maria, 9, Juliette, 7, Alex, 5, and Athena, 3 — away from the new park. "Between Pirate Ship, Donovan and now this, we have plenty of park hopping to do," he said.

Photos: Vail America Days parade