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Lemon Grove to Host 'Salute to Hometown Heroes Parade' Saturday

The city will celebrate the Senior League All-Stars with a parade downtown, and an afternoon of free entertainment.

Strike up the band, because there’s a parade coming to town.

Get ready to party Saturday when the city celebrates the Lemon Grove Little League’s history making run to the Senior League Baseball World Series with a “Salute to Lemon Grove’s Hometown Heroes Parade” in downtown Lemon Grove.

Among the participants to escort the Senior League All-Stars along the parade route will be engines from Heartland Fire & Rescue, marching bands, dancers, veterans groups, Miss Lemon Grove, and an impressive array of custom, vintage and tricked-out cars and motorcycles.

Lemon Grove represented the Western region in the international baseball tournament held last week in Bangor, Maine, and was unbeaten in pool play to become the U.S. Champions. And while the team fell short of grabbing the top title in Saturday’s championship game—Guatemala took the win 6-3—they captured the hearts of those who cheered them on.

The parade will travel the city’s historic parade route, stepping off at the intersection of Broadway and Grove Street at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 25. The parade will travel down Broadway, turn at the “Big Lemon” onto Lemon Grove Avenue, and end on School Lane next to the Recreation Center and new Lemon Grove Academy for the Sciences and Humanities.

A community bash will start at 5 p.m. at the Rec Center, featuring an afternoon of free entertainment, games, and music, and a celebration honoring the team. Food will be available for sale, with proceeds benefitting the Lemon Grove Little League.

Rounding out the festivities will be a community movie night, starting about 8 p.m. “Dolphin Tale,” the 2011 movie starring Harry Connick Jr., Ashley Judd and Morgan Freeman, will be shown free outdoors at the Rec. Participants should bring lawn chairs or blankets for the grass.

This is the first parade the city has staged in eight years, according to City Manager Graham Mitchell, whose son played T-ball this year for the Lemon Grove Little League’s Padres Blue team. And Mitchell himself was catcher for his Little League's all-star team.

“Besides celebrating the Lemon Grove All-Stars team, I’m looking forward to seeing a community come together and how the residents interact,” Mitchell said. “It is what I love about Lemon Grove—it epitomizes the small town feel from yesteryear.”

Parade attendees are encouraged to park near the Rec Center.

Lemongrovelocal August 25, 2012 at 03:41 AM
I loved going to the Lemon Grove Old Times Days when I was younger. It was small (unlike a neighboring festival that takes place in October), quaint, and so much fun. I was in the Helix Marching band and we sold funnel cakes there as a fundraiser. I remember helping and coming home smelling like funnel cake for a days after. I had a funnel cake aversion for a LONG time! There is the bonfire in December, while it doesn't take the place of Old Time Days, it is a fun community event my kids love! I hope tomorrow is a successful event! I know my kids will have a blast honoring their Lemon Grove Champs!
James Davis August 25, 2012 at 08:30 PM
Great comments guys! As a committee member that helped kick off this event, its this kind of local spirit that will help make this event successful now and in the future. Way to go Little Leaguers, City of LG and East County Chamber for helping to make this event happen.
James Davis August 25, 2012 at 09:40 PM
..and for Christine Huard our great local Patch editor for getting the word out :)
Mark & Anne Stapleton August 26, 2012 at 02:17 AM
This turned out to be a great celebration for Lemon Grove! So glad we were able to attend.
James Davis August 26, 2012 at 05:10 AM
Mark and Anne, wanted to drop by to say hi, but you guys were BUSY. Hope the HEAL Zone stuff went well :)

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