Plans are in full swing for Little Britches weekend

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By Kassidy Christensen


The Little Britches weekend is fast approaching and will take place May 19 to 21.

As reported, the parade will occur May 19 at 10 a.m.

The parade marshals were chosen based on the theme “A Salute to High River First Responders,” Hank Leeferink, parade chair, said.

Representing the High River Fire Department (HRFD) will be Len Zebedee, now retired fire chief, and former fire chiefs Lark IsBell and Oliver Perry.

High River Alberta Health Services (AHS) Emergency Medical Services (EMS) members include Dr. Keith Spackman, High River Hospital chief of staff, and Fred Stegmeier, retired director for High River EMS.

The parade marshal representing the RCMP will be Staff Sgt. Robin Alexander, High River RCMP detachment commander.

As of May 14, Leeferink reported nearly 78 floats will be participating in the parade.

He said the number of floats has increased by about 10 per cent from last year.

"This will be the biggest parade we've had in years," Leeferink said.

The Highwood Lions Club beef on a bun will be available in George Lane Memorial Park for $3 following the parade.

Several events will occur, including the Little Britches Rodeo, River of Music Festival, the High River Farmers’ Market, Fine Art & Handcrafted Market, Servus and Sobeys Taste of High River and a Piano Party featuring High River’s Community Piano.

The Little Britches Rodeo will host performances on Friday, May 18 starting at 4 p.m. and Saturday, May 19 at 12 p.m. at the High River Agricultural Society Rodeo Grounds, Ted Evans, High River Agricultural Society president, said.

The Friday and Saturday events will feature wild pony racing, Evans said.

The top four wild pony racing times from the Little Britches Rodeo will qualify to compete again during Guy Weadick Days, occurring June 21 to 24, for the belt buckle top prize, Evans said.

“Those kids then get the opportunity to participate in the pro rodeo,” he said. “It's a thrill a lot of times to run at the pro rodeo.”

Evans said the Little Britches Rodeo Princess, Willow Kingsmith, was crowned May 9.

“The princess role is an ambassador to the sport of rodeo,” he said.

Evans said Kingsmith was chosen because of her “positive attitude and always having a smile on her face.”

On Monday, May 21, the 4H Show and Sale will start at 1 p.m. at the rodeo grounds’ indoor arena, he said.

The River of Music Festival will feature live music from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on May 19 in various downtown locations and a new song writing contest, according to a town press release.

That same day, the Servus and Sobeys Taste of High River will feature foods from around the world at the Highwood Centre and begins at 11:30 a.m.

The High River Farmers’ Market, hosted by the Foothills Special Needs Association for Parents and Siblings (SNAPS), will be held on Fourth Avenue SW from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on parade day.

The Fine Art & Handcrafted Market, put on by the High River Art Society, will take place at the High River United Church on May 18 from noon to 6 p.m. and May 19 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The piano party will occur from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. outside Carlson’s on Macleod, according to a media release.

“Six talented local pianists will share their musical gifts for all to enjoy,” the release stated. “A tip jar will be set up for donations, all of which will support an improved maternity unit at the High River Hospital.”

As reported, visiting Calgary marching bands and the house band from Notre Dame Collegiate will perform in George Lane Memorial Park for Battle of the Bands following the parade, Leeferink said.

“If you're a marching band enthusiast that's the place to be," he previously said.

It will also be Spring Seeding Weekend May 19 to 21 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Bar U Ranch National Historic Site, according to the release.

“Visitors can enjoy horse drawn wagon rides and experience working draft horses,” it is stated.

Leeferink said May 19 hosts two world-renowned events.

“If you happened to not be invited to the Royal Wedding, we’d love to have you join us at the Little Britches Parade,” Leeferink is quoted as saying in the release.

Keep reading the High River Times for coverage from the Little Britches weekend in the May 25 edition.




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