25 Years Later: CMC Still Floating By in Claremont’s Fourth of July Parade

Baseball. Hot dogs. Apple Pie. And CMC? Well, why not?
Count back 25 years, and against the red, white, and blue backdrop of Americana that decorates the city of Claremont on Fourth of July, you’ll find a little piece of Claremont McKenna College. It was then that CMC first dipped into the city’s spirited celebration of America’s birthday by sending a collegiate float down the parade runway, accessorized of course by exuberant, fresh-faced students proud to carry the name of their school into town.
This year is no different, althoughyestimes have changed. Golf carts draped with streamers and sparkly garland? Cute. But this July, CMC will slip into something a little more stylish for its traditional turn down the parade route: a vintage Mercedes convertible, driven by John Faranda 79, the College’s vice president for alumni and parent relations. Sitting shotgun will be the Stag and Athena two fresh-faced and exuberant students, representing the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps athletics mascots.
They, in turn, will be joined by hundreds, if not thousands, of residents of all ages on foot, on bicycles, in wagons, on floats, and even on horseback, as Wednesday’s Fourth of July parade kicks off at 4 p.m., starting on the west side of 10th Street, and heading south under the shaded canopy of Indian Hill Boulevard trees near Memorial Park. The event is one of many throughout the day that will ultimately draw more than 20,000 residents and visitors to Claremont.
CMC’s connection to Fourth of July events goes even a pace further this year. As it happens, alumnus Colin Tudor ’05, who serves as the city’s interim assistant city manager, will be kicking off the list of T. Willard Hunter speakers at Memorial Park at 11 a.m. Tudor will be reciting the Declaration of Independence. (Read more about his connection to CMC and his thoughts on why people love celebrating Independence Day in Claremont.)
Here is a list of the major activities happening throughout the day:

Claremont Celebrates America

6 -7:15 a.m.: Registration and bib pick-up for Freedom 5000 Walk/Run. Day of race registration is $30 for adults, and $20 for kids 12 and under. (Memorial Park)

7-10 a.m.: Kiwanis Club Pancake Breakfast. Tickets are $4 at the booth. (Memorial Park)

7:30 a.m.: 1K Kids Run

8 a.m.: 5K Run/Walk

10 a.m.: Flag Raising Ceremony, in front of flagpole at Garner House. Included: Welcome/flag dedication, To the colors, Pledge of Allegiance, Invocation, National Anthem, God Bless America, America the Beautiful, Dismissal (Memorial Park)

10:30 a.m.: If still available, tickets to the Fireworks Sky Show will be sold at the Information Booth at this time

Fun throughout the day: 67 booths (including food booths), plus demonstrations, games, clowns, strolling bands, jugglers, and a tall Uncle Sam (Memorial Park)

11 a.m. 2:50 p.m.: T. Willard Hunter Speakers Corner, featuring 10-minute-each speeches by various community members and elected officials on a variety of topics, including The Declaration of Independence, Claremont’s Sustainable Future, American Political Phrases, and the True Source of America’s Strength (Memorial Park)

3:30-3:55 p.m.: Parade line-up (west 10th Street)

4 p.m.: 2012 Fourth of July Community Parade (Route starts on west 10th Street, then south on Indian Hill Boulevard, west on Harrison Avenue, to Mountain Avenue, and disbands at Larkin Park)

6:30 p.m.: Gates open for Fireworks Sky Show at Pomona College’s Strehle Track (Pre-sale tickets are $8 and $10 at the gate, if available. Children under 3 are free. Tickets may be purchased at the Hughes Community Center, the Chamber of Commerce, Rio de Ojas, and Von’s and Wolfe’s markets.)

6:45 p.m.: Live concert at Strehle Track featuring classic rock band LCR

9 p.m.: Fireworks Sky Show