Truman parade draws large crowd

TRUMAN — The annual Truman Days parade brings in many people from near and far. The parade, which will take place on Saturday at 5 p.m., draws many participants and spectators and has been a highlight of the weekend festival. This year, Nancy Salic stepped up to organize the parade.

A lot of planning goes into setting up Truman Days and organizing the parade. Last year was long-time parade organizers, Glen and Melody Leimer and Greg and Adele Kaufman’s last year putting on the parade. Knowing someone else needed to fill the spot, Salic decided to attend a Truman Days committee meeting.

“This year they needed help with it so I went to the meeting and someone was needed to pick up the parade stuff. So I did that and went though it. I went to the next meeting with nine units lined up and one paid. I just decided to keep doing it,” Salic said.

The first meeting was in February but Salic has been attending meetings since March. While she wasn’t originally planning on being so involved, she said it hasn’t been too difficult to organize.

“The people prior had it so organized so it’s basically just been getting a hold of the units. A lot of people have thanked me for doing it, which is really nice. We’ve had a lot of support,” Salic said.

Salic said she’s just given out a notice to previous units that have participated, but some other new businesses and entertainment groups have contacted her.

Several units have been lost this year, choosing to book other events, but quite a few new ones have also been added to bring the total to 96 units. Salic said she’s been told some units drive up last minute to join the parade so she’s left some spots open in anticipation of last minute units.

“Everyone wants to come to Truman. I’ve heard from a dozen units that they just love coming to Truman,” Salic said.

The parade is usually about two hours long, but there are units who stop and perform during the parade to break it up.

The parade will follow the same route that it has in past years beginning at the west end of town near the post office and it goes past the park and ends by St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.

Glen and Melody Leimer and Greg and Adele Kaufman will be grand marshals in the parade and will help with set up the morning of the parade to get the unit signs out. Salic said she’s been in contact with them and they’ve been helping as questions come up. There will also be other volunteers who help during the parade.

Truman Days begins Thursday with city wide garage sale with 44 participating locations. Maps will be available at Truman stores.

A variety of events will take place Friday starting with a vintage tractor ride at 7:30 a.m. A bean bag tournament will take place at Graf Park at 6 p.m. with registration beginning at 5:30 p.m.

Many events take place Saturday including an all you can eat Belgian waffle breakfast, 5K run/walk, volleyball tournament and kid’s tractor pull. Graf Park will have much to offer on Saturday including a petting zoo, inflatables for kids, craft and food vendors and entertainment.

“The park is the place to be,” Salic said.

The will be musical entertainment at the park prior to the parade, and after the parade. The street dance begins in the park at 8:30 p.m.

New this year will be a silent auction that will take place from noon to 2 p.m. on Saturday at Graf Park. There will be more than 20 items, nine of which are valued over $100.

“We’ve never done a silent auction. We’ve done a live auction but it wasn’t well-attended. We decided to do a silent one so we could do it for a longer period of time,” Salic said, adding she thinks maybe live auctions intimidate people. She believes the silent auction will be well-attended.

Salic shared that next year, there will be an all-school reunion during Truman Days.

“Next year we’re hoping for even bigger and better things. Hopefully we’ll have more help next year, especially with it being the all school reunion. We want to make it nice,” Salic said.

While there are high hopes for next year, this year’s Truman Days will be nothing short of the fun that it has provided so many in the past.

“I think we have a very supportive community. People have given donations and it’s been really good. It’s been really nice to see,” Salic said.