Elks Grand Parade set for noon on Saturday

Despite controversy over the new route, the traditional parade will continue on Loggers Playday, although it will be with a new name.

The Elks Grand Parade promises all the perennial favorites, organizer Bonnie Cable said. Entries are down slightly — about 90 compared with the usual 100 or so — but the bands, including the Sauerkraut Band and the Tacoma Scots, will still be playing during the parade and afterward at the Elks Lodge.

“We have a hydroplane that was in last year that’s coming back. A lot of kids really liked the hydroplane,” Cable said.

Youth organizations and log trucks will also march through the streets of Hoquiam before the Playday events at Olympic Stadium.

The route is the same as last year, kicking off at noon at the corner of 8th and N streets, moving down 8th for a few blocks, and hanging a left on K Street to finish at 3rd Avenue. The route hits more residential areas than the old route, which went through downtown, but offers greater safety for the entries and much easier staging for the organizers. Parade announcers will be telling the crowd about downtown businesses and any specials going on that day.

The parade entries will be judged by Elks from the Everett area. Former exalted rulers Anne Hall and Myrtle Davis have become big fans of the parade and the town, Cable said.

“These women just beg to come back every year, they just enjoy it. They enjoy the hospitality of the Elks Lodge and they enjoy the community. … They just feel like family here, everyone knows their names,” Cable said.

The out-of-town judges offer an objective opinion on the entries, ignoring any Aberdeen-Hoquiam rivalries.

“These guys don’t know the rivalries, so these guys when they come in, they go on what they see,” Cable explained.

The Elks will also host a dance following the Playday events, and will still honor the Playday buttons for admission even though the committee is not providing funding this year. Admission is $5 otherwise for the 21 and over dance.

“Even if you’re 120, you’ve still got to bring your ID,” Cable said.

The band “Ready or Not” will play dance tunes as they have for the past several Playday dances.