“Retro Orcas” is the theme for the Chamber of Commerce’s annual community parade, scheduled for Saturday, July 7, in Eastsound.
“The chamber board wanted to have a theme that lets all islanders enjoy the history of Orcas Island, and we hope islanders will celebrate with us by taking part and watching the parade,” said Colleen Smith Armstrong, chamber board president (and publisher of the Islands’ Sounder).
The chamber is pleased to announce that islander Betty Hall will serve as grand marshal of the community parade. Hall and her family have long ties to the history of Orcas Island, including ancestral ties to Louis and Mary Ann Cayou, who settled here in the 1850s. Many consider them to be the first permanent settlers of Orcas Island.
Hall, who grew up in the Deer Harbor area of the island, recalls a childhood filled with boating, swimming and fishing. She married her husband Robert in 1958, and their two children – Donna and Dave – are also residents of Orcas Island. Hall worked for 26 ½ years at the Eastsound Post Office, and for the past 18 years, she has been earning a little “gas money” in her part-time position at Island Hardware and Supply.
“We encourage participation in the parade,” said Lance Evans, chamber executive director, “and we particularly hope a wide range of residents and visitors take part this year.”
The Chamber of Commerce — with the sponsorship of Island Market — is offering a $100 cash prize and two $50 Island Market gift certificates for the top three entries that most uniquely capture the theme of the parade. Visitors and residents alike are invited to enjoy the parade on North Beach Road and Main Street in Eastsound starting at noon on Saturday, July 7.
Parade entry forms are available at the chamber office and on the chamber website. Parade entry fees are $25 for nonprofit and community organizations, and $35 for businesses per group, regardless of the number of people. One hundred percent of this fee will go toward the fireworks display in Eastsound on Wednesday, July 4. The deadline to submit entries for the parade is Friday, June 29.
The familiar fireworks donation containers are located at Island Market, and spare change (or more) is appreciated to help pay for the fireworks. Tax-deductible contributions to the fireworks show can be made through the Orcas Island Community Foundation. Visit www.OICF.us or call them at 360-376-6423. For more information about the parade or fireworks, contact the chamber office at 360-376-2273 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.