FOB Parade is on a new day

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Rather than leading off the festival on Thursday as it has in the past, this year’s Festival of the Bells Parade will be held at noon Saturday, July 6, so that more people will hopefully be able to enjoy it.

The parade is put on by the Highland County Firefighters Association, and lineup will be held this year at the former Hillsboro High School location at 358 W. Main St. in Hillsboro starting at 10 a.m. Judging will be from 1o:30 to 11:30 a.m.

The parade theme will be Small Town American Dream. Parade organizers noted that candy given away by parade participants must be handed out, not thrown.

The festival committee will judge non-fire/EMS entries on the theme and the most patriotic. Awards will be given in different categories to fire and life squad entries only. Those categories will be: Best Equipped and Maintained Engine from 2014 to 2024, 2001 to 2013, 1981 to 2000 and 1980 and older; Best Equipped and Maintained Pumper/Tanker; Best Equipped and Maintained Aerial or Platform (ladder truck); Best Equipped and Maintained Field Unit; Best Equipped and Maintained Rescue; Best Equipped and Maintained BLS Unit; Best Equipped and Maintained ALS Unit; Best Equipped and Maintained Tanker/Tender; Best Antique; and Chief’s Choice.

If multiple units are in an entry, try to arrive at same time, if possible. Persons with questions may email [email protected] or call call 937-403-3121 and leave a message if there is no answer.

“We were originally doing lineup at the fairgrounds, but are going back to the old school. Entries will need to enter off West Main Street at the west gate by the Scott House,” said Lora Kelly, president of the Highland County Firefighters Association )HCFFA). “The parade will enter West Main Street at Willettesville Pike and go to the center of town, will then turn left on South High Street, right onto West Walnut, right on Oak Street and back to the old school location.”

HCFFA Training/Events Official Scott Miller said he believes the firefighters have been putting the parade on for around 20 years.

“We used to participate in various fire department parades in surrounding counties and wanted to bring neighboring departments in for ‘competition’ on best equipped and cleanest apparatus and well as how the members presented themselves for the parade,” Miller said. “When I was with Hillsboro Fire Department and now with Paint Creek, it was and is always fun to go and show off your equipment as our departments are unique in some of what we have. People love parades, kids love fire trucks, and it’s nice to be able to help put smiles on everyone’s faces with the parade.“

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