Safety first, the Paramus Parade was postponed one day due to concerns about Hurricane Arthur. Fortunately, we were bypassed for the fury of Arthur and the 5th was a gorgeous day drawing crowds along the way. Participants had to scurry around, adjust schedules, yet it came off well. Mayor Rich LaBarbiera started the parade off and had a big following. Among the politicians seen there were Freeholders Jim Tedesco and David Ganz, New Jersey Assemblymen Tim Eustace and Joe Lagana, US Senator Scott Garrett, Councilwomen Maria Elena Bellinger, Jeanne Weber, Councilmen Pat Verile, Joe Garcia and Steve Sullivan. Paramus Police Chief Kenneth Ehrenburg came back from vacation to participate with Deputy Chief Robert Guidetti and lots of marching members of the Paramus Police force.
Since this reporter chose to ride with the Paramus Sunrise Rotary Club, he did not get a full view of everyone in the march nor the many floats. Paramus Sunrise Rotary Club partnered with the Outlets at Bergen Town Center and the Paramus Food Pantry to collect food along the marchers' path. There were supposed to be collectors along the way, but there was a last minute cancellation so the onlookers came up to the vehicles supplied by Bergen Town Center and deposited their donations. It was cute to watch the little ones hurry up to the collecting vehicles and deposit their donations. Bergen Town Center left collection vehicles at Paramus High School for the start of the parade and at Memorial School for the end of the parade. The effort, unloaded at the Human Services building, was well worthwhile! Each year it grows larger and larger to satisfy an urgent need.
Paramus Sunrise Rotary Club members present were Sophie Stone who brought her daughter Christy, Mukesh Malkan, Bassam Mhich, Dennis Arslanian, Tina Apprich and Mel Fabrikant who were assisted by Jeff McLaughlin from Bergen Town Center and Maria Harkin from the Board of Health. The date postponement caused the dropping out of Joe Castelano of Doctors Express and President Janet Pomante who had made other commitments.
Ann Marie Franson, Parade Chair and Ace Antonio, 4th of July Chair were seen scooting around the parade route in golf carts making sure that there were no glitches. Safety first was their motto!