Spanish Town finalizes parade details

POSTED: Wednesday, February 15, 2012 - 9:05pm

UPDATED: Wednesday, February 15, 2012 - 10:05pm

Parade lovers united Wednesday night. The 90 krewes that make up the Spanish Town Parade met to discuss the finer points of driver safety before the floats roll this Saturday.

"Everybody likes to have a good time and a lot of drinking," said Duane Degruy, a long-time driver. "Keep the drinking people on the floats, and people catching beads from getting on the floats."

But with thousands screaming from the sidelines, a driver's job gets more complicated.

"All floats get bigger," Degruy said. "So always make sure when turning, there's nobody underneath the float or in between the truck and trailer."

In fact, the Spanish Town Parade grew so big, city officials tried to limit the floats at 75 this year for better crowd control.

"We'd like it to be 125 actually," said parade organizer and treasurer Dusty Kling.

A last minute compromise between police and parade organizers brings the total to 90 floats allowed for this year.

"We'll live with it," Kling said. "Cuts into our charity money."

It costs anywhere from $300 to $1500 for a float to roll in the Spanish Town Parade. Organizers said leftover revenue is donated to local charities.

"More floats, obviously more revenue," Kling said. "We'll give away more money with more floats."

Kling said $86,000 was donated last year to local charities after the parade. This year's parade rolls Saturday at noon.

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