These are just a few shots of what I have been doing lately around Watkinsville. Last night it was the City Council meeting:
Mayor Joe Walter just presented them with the last plaque and you can see the ubiquitous Council member Brian Brodrick behind them.
I think his daughter had just won an award with a bunch of girl scouts a moment earlier.
But these two young ladies tossed candy canes to eager recipient from a stocking hung very high in the air of Main Street and Barnett Shoals.
This first-time entry was impressive enough to garner the award out of the 124 entries. The judges were local G.O.P. chair Jay Hanley and Taylor Smith and Josh Stanfield. The judges had to choose from a wide array of entries in a pretty short time frame. They have a thankless job despite the full page ad in the Oconee Enterprise attempting to do so.
There was the usual crowd of a couple of thousand people all over the route with kids grabbing candy tossed from the participants. The animals included several teams of horses and at least one small cow and a few other farmyard animals.
The weather and traffic cooperated as much as possible, and only a few wayward vehicles needed to park downtown during the happy gathering.
Volunteer firefighters. policeman, county sheriff deputies, Watkinsville Street Department and Chamber of Commerce folks worked well with the throng of attendees and vehicles. This parade has become quite an annual gathering of all kinds of family and friends. It is probably only second to the Fall Festival in terms of bringing people out of their homes and into the streets of the city.
Exactly how much they spend in Oconee County is very difficult to quantify, but it is certainly welcome and appreciated. Job well done on all parts and amazing cooperation can yield outstanding results for everybody.
The fact that this parade comes off as flawlessly as it does every year does nothing less than restore my faith in humanity, and reinforce the notion however jaundiced locally that Oconee County is the best county in the state for the equine set. I really think that horse racing would help Oconee County's economy, and that we might as well have parimutuel betting since we have a lottery already. Yes I think it could rescue Georgia too.
The most amazing animal display may have been the horse drawn carriage taking the wonderful Mrs. Louise Shearon down the street with her squire son David in attendance. This 5-acre estate known as Ashford Manor Bed and Breakfast is an amazing place that should be visited by everyone who comes to Watkinsville.
I put a friend named Kelly Lonning up there this summer. She is back shivering in Connecticut. But I might visit her next week if she is very lucky. Yes I am going to freeze my ass in New York next week.
It certainly was the most stylish entry in the history of the Watkinsville Christmas Parade since the opening of Ashford Manor Bed and Breakfast. I give them five stars for this collection of talent and panache.
Mrs. Shearon ascension to her carriage was no small feat unto itself and big props to Wyler Hecht and Regina King for keeping order amidst the chaos of the later parade participants.
High Shoals was amongst the first of the floats and Violet Dawe dashed through the route with her wagon ensconced with assorted passengers from the Town Council.
Mayor Walter and the rest of the Watkinsville City council were blessed to have Mrs. Shearon in the audience for the meeting Wednesday to receive her well deserved award.
Her son Dave and Mario Castro help the city by building her house down below making it look it had been there for a 100 years. It is fit perfectly on the curve of Harden Hill Road, above where Police Chief Lee O'Dillon installed a very smart crosswalk. This would get my vote for the most important public work project of 2010.
Mrs. Shearon and all the local elderly folks in the parade like grand marshall Myrtice Kilpatrick are wonderful local treasures who should be recognized more than once a year.
We should have a gala dinner or something to honor Miss Vinnie Williams this year. I welcome any deep pockets or people with strong ideas to take over this project from me.
Yes I am writing like an aggrieved son who just lost a beloved father on the ever of the holidays. But anyhow here are some more photos of the city council meeting and the parade.
Below is the Girl Scout Troop along with Maridee Williams of the Oconee Enterprise newspaper and Mayor Joe Walter. If they are Brownies and not Girl Scouts I humbly apologize for my mistake.
I believe they are called the Girl Scouts of Historic Georgia.