Monday, March 24, 2014

The Findlay Market Opening Day Parade and the Cincinnati Reds

In the early days of professional baseball in Cincinnati, the competing teams would encourage fans to follow them to the field to watch the opening game of the season. The Findlay Market merchants became the largest and perhaps most enthusiastic group. By 1930, the parade had become known as the Findlay Market Parade, and the merchants assumed the role of organizing it as a way to kick off the Cincinnati Reds season. 
Neil Luken of Charles Bare Meats at Findlay Market has been the Chairman of the Opening Day Parade since 1998. He has his finely-tuned committee of merchants who review the entries, confirm the lineup, consult with local officials regarding route and logistics, and scurry around on parade day making sure all the pieces fall into place. Can you imagine trying to get almost 200 entries lined up and ready to step off at exactly noon? Although no one from Daisy Mae's is currently on the committee, we certainly appreciate all the effort that goes into making the event a success, and we marvel each year at how everything seems to go off without a hitch.
Photo courtesy of Elise Speeg
If you've never been to the Findlay Market Opening Day Parade, you are missing one of the best events of the year in Cincinnati. People of all ages, races, backgrounds, and socioeconomic levels line the streets and wave to the parade participants. It's the official start of spring in Cincinnati so whether or not the weather cooperates, the crowds are ready to celebrate a new season, and everyone is a Reds fan. The Veggie Gals from Daisy Mae's will be marching this year with our friends the Pillow People. We can't wait to give you a high-five and a "Let's Go Reds!" as we head toward Fountain Square. We'll be honoring a great Findlay Market tradition, saluting the Cincinnati Reds, and celebrating with all of you as we kick off the 2014 baseball season. 

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