The Pitt Meadows Day Parade doubles as a main street water fight.
Each year, Pitt Meadows Fire and Rescue Service members – those local experts in cutting loose with an accurate stream of water – engage hundreds of kids, and big kids, who line the route, waiting to ambush the firemen with their Super Soakers.
“Firefighters have always been a big part of Pitt Meadows Day,” said Mayor Bill Dingwall, noting they not only add fun to the morning parade, but are there until the end of the day, organizing and setting off the fireworks display.
Other emergency responders, such as police, have also joined firefighters to even the water-fight odds.
Beginning in 2018, water balloons were banned from the water fight after some firefighters had their helmets knocked off and sunglasses broken. The deflated balloons also create litter that doesn’t biodegradable quickly.
But water guns are certainly encouraged.
The parade itself is also entertaining, with thousands of people lined up along Harris Road to see a variety of floats and entries. Last year, kids were wowed to see Homer Simpson and a Star Wars storm trooper on a speeder bike, mixed in with the local flavour of made-in-Pitt Meadows floats and entries.
The 78th annual parade starts at 11 a.m., but people start arriving on the parade route long before that.
“People line up at 8 a.m. in the morning with their lawn chairs to get their spot,” said Dingwall.
The mayor said the city councillors also have a new parade entry, aside from the city float.
“You’re going to see a personal touch with the community,” Dingwall added.
“It’s going to be an amazing day.”
The parade is staged and starts on Hammond, runs north the full length of downtown on Harris Road, before turning west on McMyn.