Sunshine broke thorough the clouds after a cloudy day, just in time for the kickoff of the annual Fourth of July parade in Edgartown Saturday. Crowds had gathered on Main Street sidewalks hours before the 5 pm kick off. Some families camped out in lawn chairs and other couples nestled on blankets on open areas of grass.
At the afternoon progressed, children jumped around and orbited their parents, asking when the parade would begin. The answer came when instruments could be heard in the distance. Onlookers gathered in droves on the streets’ edges and craned their necks to get a glimpse of the head of the parade. Military veterans stood at attention in front of the Dukes County courthouse, the unofficial reviewing stand, where a band played each the anthem of each branch of the military. The crowd cheered after each song finished.
Parade floats followed. Each represented the creativity of its sponsors.
Judging preceded the parade. Camp Jabberwocky, the most intricate, won “Most Original ” for its Princess Rapunzel themed tower. Campers and camp volunteers in vibrant fictional character costumes, which ranged from Sleeping Beauty villain Malificent to Beauty and the Beast walked behind the float. The iconic camp bus brought up the rear of the party.
Many Island businesses and sports teams were also represented. These included clothing line Vineyard Vines, as well as the energetic Martha’s Vineyard Sharks collegiate baseball team. Many of those on the floats threw candy to children lined up along the route, much to the delight of the adults and children.
The parade wrapped up just before 7 pm after a nearly two hour long procession.