Saturday, August 12, 2006

The Bud Billiken Parade....

Today is the annual Bud Billiken Parade. I've never gone to one I suppose I wasn't that interested and neither were my parents but if I am interested I watched this parade on TV which has been shown on TV on either ABC7 or WGN. I can remember a couple of these parades that were held in about the last 7 years or so.

The first one I really paid attention to was back in 1999. I was listening to the radio buildup to it on Mancow's Morning Madhouse when he first started on Q101. He and his sports guy, Al Roker Jr (probably not related to the real Al Roker), were talking about this parade and Mancow wanted to participate. Well he did but I didn't see it on the original broadcast on either ABC7 or WGN so I had to watch it on his TV program at the time MancowTV. He was a goofball but he had some fun.

The other one I heard about was when Alan Keyes marched in this parade. The crowd seemed to have turned against him. Probably for many reasons but this was one parade where he wasn't welcome. Anyway I think this was the same parade that made the news when some young people were sent to the hospital because they were at a concert and it was either too crowded or too hot.

I was just checking out the parade's website and looking at it's history there were so many people who participated including a President of the United States...
Some of the celebrities who have graced the parade's route over the years include Joe Louis, Muhammad Ali, Duke Ellington, Oprah Winfrey, Hop-Along Cassidy, Lena Horne, Spike Lee, L.L. Cool J, Bozo the Clown, Jack Brickhouse, Frank Thomas, Michael Jordan and President Harry S. Truman.
Here's another interesting fact...
Frank Godsen and Charles Correll of “Amos and Andy” fame were the first guests of honor in a parade attended by thousands and led by Robert S. Abbott in his Rolls Royce.
This parade is said to be a celebration of black culture and education. In fact it is billed as a back to school parade. If you can watch it on TV now and if you're so inclined pay a visit one day. Even consider participating with a float.

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