Sunday, August 10, 2014

Mint To Bee: Parade Time in St. Johns

So this weekend was the second Saturday in August...and you know what that means, don't you?  Well it's the St. Johns Mint Festival of course!  Every year AgroLiquid is a participant.  And as in life, nothing gets done without a committee.  The planning committee for our entry was Kathy, Cheryl, Jill, Leslie, Lynette and Eric (for testosterone balance).  The theme that was chosen was Mint To Bee, paying homage to the importance of bees in agriculture.  And kind of a play on words I was told. (Hmmmm. Not sure I get it.)
And here is the back of the cool T-Shirt that you got to wear if you were a marcher.  
Here is the float outside the Hive, I mean Liquid HQ early Saturday morning ready to head to town for the parade.  It is all decorated with flowers, fertilizer, bees and will have another surprise to show later.  In addition to the float, there was a semi-truck and tanker, our people mover, Gators and lots of yellow-clad T-shirt walkers.
With so many vehicles and people, Dale gives his suggestion on parade spacing.  Troy marches out to tell him to go stand in the corner and be quiet till it's time to go. 
Once in the parade staging area, we were pleased to see that everyone's favorite, Farm Guy, had come to St. Johns to march in the parade with Liquid.  Here we see Kalvin, Emily and Ron from the NCRS giving him a big welcome.
And here is the obligatory pre-parade group shot.  We were well represented with plenty of employees, friends and family.  (Somebody get Farm Guy a yellow T-shirt.)
Here is the float surprise: a couple of beekeepers in real bee suits (or whatever you call them.)  Our beekeepers are Margie and Dean.  So keep your stingers at bay.
There are lot's of kids and adults who will be wearing the fashionable yellow T-shirts for years to come.  Like Leslie here with her sister and nephews.  
And here is float tractor driver Nick with bee-girl Ruby and Andrea ready to go.  Enjoy the ride Nick while your wife and daughter have to walk the 3 miles.  (Oh shoot, Nick is my boss.  Hope he doesn't read this or I will be out hoeing weeds again like when I started.)
Kalvin is super excited here.  A woman came up and gave him a trophy for Best in Show.  However further reading indicated that it was for the float and not him.  (But maybe he was standing by it during the judging.)  Better luck next year.
At last the parade begins.  Here is the Liquid banner leading Liquid group through town.
The tanker makes the turn while lot's of different items are given to parade watchers along the route. There are samples of ferti-Rain for house plants, bee coloring books, invites to the IQ Hub grand opening, 5K invites....oh, and candy.
Lynette drives one of the supply Gators.
Farm Guy keeps the parade moving.  We were spread out over a block long.  Maybe we should have listened to Dale after all.  Nah.
Like I said, it was a family affair for participants.  Below are my two nephews and their Aunt Cathy passing out candy to excited kids.  And adults.
And in the end, it was pile in or on a trailer and head back to HQ.  That was a fun time and I look forward to it every year.  It will be hard to top the Bee theme though.  But we've got a year to think about it.
A nice time, an appreciative town, great weather and a first place was Meant To Be.  Wait a minute: Mint To Bee.  Hey, I get it now