Keep those float entries rolling in and get the show on the road

Alexandra Blossom Festival organisers are worried about the lack of entries for the festival's grand parade next month.

Event manager Martin McPherson has received only three entries for the Blossom Festival Grand Parade on September 26 and called on people to get their entries in soon.

He worried some people thought they had more time to register their interest, but the deadline was actually last week, Mr McPherson said.

It was six weeks until the festival, and that might seem like a long time for some, ''but to me, it's not''.

Traditionally, about 50 float entries were received and, as part of the of the weekend's festival events, it drew crowds of more than 12,000 people.

He was told by one community group it was not putting in a float this year, instead waiting until next year when the festival celebrated its 60th anniversary.

It was that ''sort of thinking'' by community groups and people that worried him and if the parade was not as ''grand'' this year, it might disappoint visitors to Alexandra, he said.

However, in his experience, there were usually a lot of last-minute entries.

''For my peace of mind, and to help with the stress this causes the organisers, could people please get the information back to me.''

The parade would take place on Saturday, September 26. One of the entries included a first time entry from the Alexandra RSA, which was going to commemorate WW1.

The Philippines community and the Lions Club were also getting involved but he had not heard from other groups, including schools. The festival committee was planning new additions to the weekend's events.

''There are a couple of elements coming in the way of amusement rides, but that's for the kids to see when they turn up.''

The committee had also changed the people's choice award criteria. In the past the award went to a float which carried a princess, but now all floats were eligible, he said.

Weekend events included live music, and country music star Jody Direen, as well as craft markets and a kids stage at Pioneer Park after the parade.

liam.cavanagh@odt.co.nz

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