I love me a good parade and Hillsboro has a great one!
The Fourth is my one day of the year I feel comfortable taking strangers’ pictures. After all, they literally paid to be in public, wearing what they’re wearing, doing what they’re doing. And most don’t seem to mind. Hopefully none of those I posted. I’m not going to post a picture of someone that puts them in an unflattering light. Many of these shots are of people who saw what I was doing and waved and/or smiled in response. One actually told me to take her picture (and then it didn’t turn out well, so I didn’t post it).
I know some of these are not as sharp as they could be. If this was my full-time gig, I’d certainly have a different camera. Or, I’d actually have a camera rather than borrowing.1Thanks, Ashley! You know how much being able to borrow your camera made this day for me. :-) This exercise certainly informs what camera would be a better fit for me.
Once again, I got to shake Ron Wyden’s hand. Turns out, he’s in one of the pictures, too.
I have some recommendations for you:
Go to Hillsboro’s Fourth of July parade. It’s just a bunch of fun.
Take a camera with a longish lens. The camera I was using is an APS-C with an 18-135mm. I found myself using both extremes of the range, though it’s telling that I didn’t end up posting anything at the short/wide end. Maybe a 70-210 on a full-frame camera would work.
Sit on the curb. The kids know where it’s at. You’ll get a better, unobstructed view — and more candy!
Find a place closer to the beginning of the parade. You’ll get more candy and those in the parade are still full of energy and having fun. We find a spot on Second, between Grant and Bagley Park.
We love the Fourth of July around here. The parade is a don’t miss, with marching bands, fire trucks, tractors, electric cars, dogs, and lots of people. This being an election year, I would have expected more politicians. And there were some, but the top of the ticket wasn’t emphasized, if even mentioned. :-)
Usually, I take scenic or abstract pictures, but the Fourth is the one day of the year I take people pictures of people. Sitting on the curb with a longish lens, I enjoy taking candids of those in and watching the parade. These are just a few of the shots.
Today’s parade was extra special. As my senator Ron Wyden walked by, I jumped up and shook his hand. He asked my name. Sorry, no pictures of that. Guess I should have asked for a selfie with him.
Hillboro’s Fourth of July parade is a don’t-miss affair for us. We’ve gone many times and have learned a few things in the process:
If you want lots of candy, find a spot near the beginning of the route. Most of the parade participants throw candy to the spectators. They are a generous bunch; they just don’t know how to pace themselves when it comes to throwing candy. We learned the hard way one year when we watched near the end of the route. Oops! We were healthy that year. (If you’re serious about collecting candy, bring a bag. You’ll get more than will fit in your pockets.)
Sunscreen and hats are necessary most years, coats and umbrellas the others. You’ll want to bring water to drink every year.
Bring your camera and a long lens. I like the people shots and a wide-angle lens just won’t cut it.
Hillsboro has the best Fourth of July parade. High school bands, businesses, private schools, churches, civic groups, law enforcement and emergency services, gymnastics, square dancing, auto clubs and others join in the fun.
Most participants throw candy to those lining the sidewalks. This year we positioned ourselves near (actually, before) the beginning of the route to maximize our take. (Last year, we were near the route’s end with the opposite result.) We took little pint pails for our haul and had to empty them multiple times into a bag we had with us. People from Hoffman Farms Store walked by giving out little plastic containers of fresh blueberries. That’s effective advertising! :-)
Some parts of the parade are beloved tradition (at least by my family). There’s the Get a Life marching band that would rather miss a practice than a meal. As they march along, band members punctuate their songs with cheers of, “Let’s eat!” And there’s the man riding his miniature bicycle pulling a little dog riding a skateboard.
There were some differences from last year: no candidates for office, not as many fire trucks, no synchronized motorcycle officers — and no rain. Instead we saw something new: multiple groups of government and tax protesters.