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Visitors get a preview of Days of '47 Parade floats

By Carole Mikita | Posted - Jul. 20, 2011 at 5:20 p.m.

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SALT LAKE CITY -- Once again members of church groups, corporations and community organizations have worked for months to make a statement in celebration of the state's biggest annual event.

An annual tradition gives families the chance to really see the Days of '47 Parade floats before they go down the street. Some creations sparkle, others attract crowds with animation; everyone likes something different or has a favorite.

"I think (my favorite is) this one because I just love the animals," said Amber French, Days of '47 Float Preview visitor, about the float with the boy Russell, from Pixar's Up.

"I like this one a lot because it has a lot of real flowers, but I like that one the most because it has a lot of moving things and the rocket rises up," Julia Vivas, another visitor, said.

There are also photo ops with real people. A certain one reminds you of a Disney character and yes, Ariel is her real name.

"This float is like an over-exaggerated version of the pioneers crossing to the valley, and my role is to be the mermaid," Ariel George said.

Magical images that touch the imagination are often the visual presentation to more serious events.

"What we've done here it try to honor the pioneers who crossed the ocean and honor them with the faith, courage and hope they had to cross the ocean, but we did it in a whimsical way," Dave Nigbur, float technician said.

Every group works to find an idea that fits into the overall theme. This year's is "Press Forward, Pioneers". Dozens of volunteers and true technicians work on each float for months.

"If you look around they're all so different," Lisa Reimann, said. "A community can do anything. Thank goodness for a lot of good, gifted people."

The Float Preview is on until 9:00 Wednesday night and from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m. Thursday.



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