Friday, May 27, 2016

2016 Canoga Park Memorial Day Parade Promises Delights For All Ages

By Sherman Farralone, Quilt staff.


Murla Havemeyer,  CPFNC's
Head of Parade Organizement
Mark your calendars: the 27th annual Canoga Park Memorial Day Parade will be heading down Sherman Way this Memorial Day, which this year falls on the last Monday in May.

Spectators can expect new participants marching proudly with such old favorites as the West Hills Wendy’s Six-Hour Sit-In Seniors and stepping their way carefully behind the world-famous Chatsworth Pooping Stallions.

“We’ve had applications from many new organizations for the 2016 celebration, and we’ve green-lit quite a few of them,” says Murla Havemeyer, Canoga Park Friendly Neighborhood Council’s Chairperson of Parade Organizement.

No Bull: 'Pits' To Participate In Parade
The local pit bull contingent will be out in full force this year — perhaps rather fitting since the wonderfully unpredictable animal was recently named Official Pet of Canoga Park.
Good news for local pit bulls and their owners — this year the dogs won't sit out the parade,
but can intimidate spectators en masse as they lurch eastward down Sherman Way. Staff photo.
“Pit bull owners petitioned us for some time now to allow them to march in the parade,” Havemeyer says. “We figured this would be the year. Besides, due to past, eh, incidents, we find it’s a lot safer having them in the middle of the street, away from the spectators rather than pushing their way along the crowded sidewalks and attacking children who foolishly try to pet them.”

Package Theft Group To Steal Spectators' Hearts With Spellbinding Display
File photo.
The West Valley Porch Parcel Pilferers are set to wow the crowds with a special choreographed dance routine using boxes, which they’ll be performing at four major intersections along the parade route. “And we’re lucky to have them,” Havemeyer says proudly. “They’re really giving up a lot by participating, what with so many West Hills residents expected to be among the spectators, leaving their homes unattended.”

Illegal Street Racing Demonstration
Thanks to the unprecedented growing popularity of illegal street racing across the West Valley, parade-watchers will enjoy a demonstration of some of the area’s best racers showcasing their most popular moves with signature derring-do.

“They’ll be doing burnouts, donuts and even Topanga drifts for the crowds. They were hoping to perform a classic hit-and-run, but we had to put the kibosh on that,” the parade chairperson states. “While hit-and-runs are now undeniably a huge part of Los Angeles culture, especially here in the West Valley, it would be all but impossible to make it happen.” The ‘hit’ would be no problem, Havemeyer concedes, but the hemmed-in structure of a parade route precludes any kind of successful getaway. 
A dazzling display of illegal street racing stunts & tricks is sure to ingrain itself on the minds of
young parade-watchers as it will no doubt ingrain itself onto the surface of the road. File photo.
“However, anything can happen!” Havemeyer notes with a twinkle in her eye. “The Winnetka Vocational High School Marching Band, who will be directly in front of them, has taken out additional insurance.”

“It’s kind of bittersweet for us,” says band director Dr. Harry L. Platt.  “On one hand, we’re not exactly thrilled to have cars peeling out at sixty miles an hour less than twenty yards behind us. But on the plus side, the band’s rendition of ‘Cake By the Ocean’ just wasn’t really coming together and with all those roaring engines, no one will be able to hear us.”

Live-Tagging Gets Spectators Involved
The Tagger Collective of Canoga Park will be featured this year, too, in a new, interactive aspect of the parade. “F_ckeen...we’ll be running back and forth an’ shit? All over f_ckeen Sherman Way, for the entire length of the parade route an’ shit.. You know, hitting newspaper boxes, street surfaces, light posts, those big f_ckeen drums the marching bands use, with a variety of tags an’ shit” notes Canoga Park tagger laureate DAИK. 

'Roads scholar' DAИK and his crew will be at the parade decorating various municipal fixtures &
private property along the Sherman Way route with some of their most popular tags. Staff photo.
Those at the edge of the curb beware — “ may get tagged an’ shit,” laughs the ubiquitous graffiti artist. Spectators needn’t worry too much, though — spray paint, Sharpies, paint pens and stolen Priority Mail labels the taggers use come off easily from hair and skin with everyday industrial solvent and just an hour or so of scrubbing with an abrasive pad or wire brush.  

Souvenirs & Refreshments Reflect Local Culture
Vendors will be offering new and exciting merchandise as they ply their trade along the approximate 1-mile route, too.  
Staff photo.
“Expect to see pushcarts offering the usual unlicensed inflatable Spider-Men and Batmen,” notes senior editor of West SFV Parade Retailer Weekly Matthew Cantrell. “But this year, knockoff Angry Birds toys will be part of the mix, as well as local favorites such as grilled-on-a-makeshift-hibachi-in-the-trunk-of-a-car corn cobs and small, colorful plastic vials of medical marijuana.”

The 27th Annual Canoga Park Memorial Day Parade runs east along Sherman Way from Owensmouth  Avenue to Cozycroft Street and begins at 11 a.m. Monday May 30. Get there well before the parade starts to secure a good spot, or just be an asshole and push your fat carcass in front of someone who actually did get there early.

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