Oshkosh, a small city in central Wisconsin's Fox River Valley, draws visitors who come to experience the parks, galleries, museums, sports opportunities and entertainment venues that the municipality offers. The Jaycees of Oshkosh organize a yearly Children's Parade that features a day of family fun. Residents and travelers alike bring their children to the Children's Parade for a summer day of excitement and enjoyment.
The Jaycees of Oshkosh, a group of local adults ages 21 to 40, gather as a social group to promote, organize and advance public events in the Oshkosh region. The proceeds from the Jaycees events, which include annual Easter egg hunts, the Brews n' Blues Beer and music festival and the Children's Parade, go toward supporting public works in the Oshkosh community. In addition to admission and participation fees, community sponsors provide in-kind financial assistance to help make the Jaycees' events successful.
The Jaycees in Oshkosh have run the annual Children's Parade since 1932. The parade runs from the corner of 6th Avenue and Idaho, along the edge of Franklin Park on the South side of Oshkosh. The parade moves east on 6th Avenue to Ohio Street, and then proceeds south on Ohio Street to Georgia Street. On Georgia Street the parade turns south and concludes at the entrance to South Park.
The Jaycees hold the Children's Parade on a Sunday in early August. Each year the Jaycees select a theme for the parade and encourage participants to decorate costumes and floats in tandem with the theme, though they do not require that participants adhere to the theme. Some past parade themes included the "Wild Wild West," "Hollywood Comes to Oshkosh" and "Under the Sea." Kids under 16 participate in the parade and compete for prizes.
The Jaycees award prizes for the best parade costumes. Participants and bystanders also enter the parade raffle. In addition to local kids and groups, the parade includes a color guard, local pageant winners, representatives of sponsoring businesses and organizations and the parade mascot. Aside from the police cars that open and close the parade and vehicles carrying parade guests, all participants walk the parade route.
- Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images