Saturday, July 06, 2013

Preparing the Balloon Floats

Pittsfield, Massachusetts

This is billed as one of the largest Fourth of July parades around. It really is big, lasting a full two hours as the floats and bands and drum corps march through the middle of town. It seemed a bit smaller than some previous years (I haven't gone for several years). I particularly noticed that there were a lot fewer of the large balloons than I remember. Also I noticed that only a few of the balloons were being filled with helium, from a much smaller delivery truck than the huge tanker I'd seen in past years. Other balloons instead used blower arrangements powered by battery packs carried by some of the handlers. Not sure whether that's progress or not. Another thing I hadn't seen before were tall blower-filled costumes worn by marchers, like animated Christmas yard decorations, but with Liberty Bell or dancing clown themes.

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