Norman 89er Day Parade Announces Theme

Covered wagons are rolling through downtown Norman for the 2012 Norman ’89er Day Parade at 10 a.m. Saturday.

The theme of this year’s parade is “Back in the Saddle ... Again” and will celebrate the anniversary of the Great Land Run, which opened the “Unassigned Lands” in central Oklahoma for settlement on April 22, 1889.

Sean Crandall, co-chairperson with Charles Hollingsworth, said the parade is the perfect family friendly event, complete with historical details and floats.

“I think the whole goal is to commemorate our history as the state of Oklahoma and Norman’s history becoming a city,” he said. “And remembering our western heritage and the past.”

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The parade will begin at Main Street and Pickard Avenue — with this year’s grand marshals, Drs. Bill and Teena Nations, in the lead — and will end at Main Street and Crawford Avenue.

The ’89ers Day Wagon Train — a group that tours the Oklahoma countryside in covered wagons to commemorate the land run — will be a part of the train of wagons, floats, bands, horses and classic cars during this Norman tradition, Crandall said.

This year’s judges — W. E. Duff, Linda Holt, Gary Hardwick, Bob Rice, Anthony Wuestenfeld, Meghan McCormick, Brad Benson and Joe Antinoro — will determine winners in 10 categories. Categories include best float, musical/dance group, automobiles, miscellaneous, animals and more.

Crandall said the parade will include performances from Norman High School and Norman North High School jazz bands, Lexington High School band and Noble High School band.

The parade is one of the many things that makes Norman special, Crandall said.

“I think anyone that comes out will be entertained (and) will have a good morning, and (it’s) a great way to start their weekend,” he said.

Norman ’89er Day is funded by the city of Norman and donations from individuals and businesses.