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Saturday Christmas Parade in Laquey begins series of holiday parades
Saturday Christmas Parade in Laquey begins series of holiday parades

The Laquey Marching Band passes the Laquey school during Saturday's parade from the horse arena at the east end of Highway AA to the school parking lot.

LAQUEY, Mo. (Dec. 4, 2010) — Saturday’s Christmas parade in Laquey kicked off the first of several parades in the Pulaski County parade season. Waynesville’s Christmas parade is Sunday at 2 p.m. running from Waynesville Middle School to downtown; Richland’s Christmas parade is next week Saturday at 11 a.m.

In addition, Saint Robert will hold a Christmas event in the Community Center on Old Route 66 from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday, Fort Leonard Wood’s Christmas tree lighting ceremony will be accompanied by holiday events from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, and the Ehrhardt Properties family of hotels sponsor Christmas on the Boulevard at their facilities on St. Robert Boulevard next week Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m.

Many of the local communities work hard to support each other’s events, and today’s event was no exception. Laquey is the only community in Pulaski County to have a Christmas parade that doesn’t have a city council or chamber of commerce to assist, but for more than two decades the Laquey Lions Club has received assistance from other larger communities. Waynesville and Tri-County firefighters from Richland sent engines in addition to the local firefighters from Hazelgreen, and the 399th Army Band participated in a parade whose key local participants included the Laquey marching band, various Masonic organizations connected to the Shrine Club near Laquey, and several local churches within the Laquey R-V School District.

As the Laquey marching band played “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” Idumea Baptist Church members marched with numerous Christmas-themed floats and loudspeakers mounted on Hazelgreen fire engines played Christmas music while Santa threw candy from the fire truck.

Robin Weber, the Laquey school custodian, rode a white horse named “Caspar” in the parade, decked out in red Christmas apparel this year, as she’s been doing for the last seven years.

“He’s a ham; look at him!” Weber said, showing how her horse enjoyed being the object of attention at the parade.

Winning entries in the parade, according to Laquey Lions’ Club treasurer David Hokanson, included first-place float winner Idumea Baptist Church, followed by Berean Baptist Church and the Masonic float.

The winning car in the parade was a historic orange convertible known as “The Judge” driven by Tom Tolar; second-place was the car driven by parade Grand Marshals Tracy and Linda Storie, and third-place was a Corvette driven by Vern Hendrix.

The off-road winners were a replica World War II Russian motorcycle with a sidecar mounted gun driven by Bob Ward, a lawn dractor driven by the Ladrones, and Weber’s horse.

Bob Ward rides his replica World War II motorcycle.“It’s just all sponsored for the community,” Hokanson said. “All our funds raised go to scholarships and our eyeglass fund.”

Bob Ward said his motorcycle is a ten-year old replica rther than an original.

“In World War II the Nazis had the BMW and the Russians happened to capture four (BMW motorcycles),” Ward said. “They were definitely afraid of the Nazis because they were well equipped and well-trained with the bike. They took them up into the Ural Mountains and they dismantled a couple of them made casing dies, rebuilt the bike, learned how to use it, and then when Nazi Germany invaded Russia, the Russians had produced the bike learned how to use it effectively against the Nazis.”

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