Annual Mountain City Elks Lodge Parade No. 382 Delights Crowds | Culture


Although an overcast sky threatened to rain on Sunday afternoon, people gathered in droves in the heart of downtown Frederick to see – and hear – the roar of vintage cars, marching bands and thundering motorcycles that filled the streets to celebrate the 98th anniversary of the founding of Mountain City Elks Lodge # 382.

Along East Patrick and South Market streets, families leaned against folding chairs or perched on brick walls. A group of children sat above the off-white plastic barrier in front of Cafe Nola, their feet dangling over the edge.

In front of the old PNC Bank building in Square Corner, Zach and Jake Baldwin eagerly awaited the start of the parade. Their matching camouflage umbrellas hung from the railing behind them. Even though their mother April Baldwin had lived in the area for some time, this was her first time attending Elks Lodge’s annual celebration – and it was the first time her sons had attended a parade. in person, period. What were they most excited for?

“I do not know!” Zach called.

” I do not know either ! Her brother echoed her, shrugging and making April laugh.

Around the corner, Katie Rudman and Stephanie Lichtenberger were also waiting for the parade to start. They both teach at Lincoln Elementary – Rudman teaches kindergarten and Lichtenberger teaches music to K-5 students – and they had learned of the celebration through an email their principal sent.

It didn’t take long for them to be recognized.

“Miss L.! A little girl called Lichtenberger from the bed of a van driving past the Frederick Steppers. Lichtenberger laughed, nodding back, as Rudman held his hands over his daughter’s ears, bouncing her on his knees to the beat of the music.

The hundreds of observers – rookies and veterans of the parade – were ultimately wowed by the marquee act, the Howard University Marching Band, Frederick High School and the Gov. Thomas Johnson High School, various color guards, the Frederick Steppers, Dynasty Marching Unit, Road Knights and Golden Gears car clubs and Earth, Wheels and Fire Motorcycle Club.

As with the Baldwin boys, Sunday marked the very first parade for 7-month-old Noura Awad. When a fire engine had passed by earlier, its sirens were blaring, her mother, Jessie Awad, had placed a pair of neon green headphones over her tiny ears to shield them from the noise. She smiled happily as Awad bounced her onto her lap.

Later, as a line of freshly polished vintage cars and motorcycles roared by the family, Noura’s big brother, Rami Awad, blocked his own ears from the sound. Nearby, her friend, Lacey Christianson, enthusiastically pointed out the cars from her seat on the sidewalk.

The energy of the crowd barely seemed to have subsided when the clouds above them began to spit rain drifts just after 3:30 p.m. necks to catch a glimpse of the glittering uniforms before they pass them.

Follow Angela Roberts on Twitter: @ 24_angier

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