Thank you to everyone who joined us for Bellingham’s favorite hometown parade – the Blossomtime Parade, presented by Sanitary Service Company (SSC) and the Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce! We had lots of area marching bands, floats, fire trucks and law enforcement vehicles, dance troupes, clowns, community walking groups and horses!
Congratulations to the 2017 Blossomtime Parade award recipients:
Best Antique Vehicle – Phil Dyer’s 1957 Chevy Bel Air
Best Car Club – Gear Heads
Best Dance Team – Jubilee Dance Company
Best Equestrian – Fairhaven Ladies of the Evening Society
Best Fire Truck – South Whatcom Fire Authority
Best Novelty – Thrillingham 2017: Supporting Brigadoon Services Dogs
Best Themed Walking Group – Filipino American Association of Whatcom County
Most Enthusiastic Group – Dream Train
County Executive’s Award – Best Themed Float – Sullivan Family of Ferndale
Chamber of Commerce Award – Best Commercial Float – Jubilee Dance Company
Mayor’s Award – Best Nonprofit Float – Lummi Stommish
Grand Sweepstakes Award – Most Outstanding Float – Gurmat Khalsa Punjabi School
John C. Burley Award for the Best Military or Fraternal entry – Albert J. Hamilton Post 7 The American Legion, Bellingham, WA
1st Place High School Marching Band “A” – Mount Baker High School
1st Place High School Marching Band “AA” – Sehome High School
1st Place High School Marching Band “AAA” – Ferndale High School
Best Drum line – Bellingham High School
Best Drum Major – Squalicum High School
Best Flag Team – Bellingham High School
Best Cheer Squad – Bellingham High School
Ralph Pauley Award for the Best Nonprofit, Military or Fraternal Band – Voyager Middle School
The 2017 Grand Marshal was Whatcom Community College – celebrating their 50th anniversary! WCC was represented by President Kathi Hyane-Brown, Ed.D., and a selection of WCC students.
Thank you to all the sponsors, vendors and volunteers that made the parade possible!
We’ll see you next year when the parade will be held on Saturday, May 26, 2018!
Blossomtime – Celebrating 97 Years
Making Memories since 1920
The Blossomtime Parade is a traditional hometown parade with a rich history, starting in 1920 when the then “Bellingham Chamber of Commerce” conducted a beauty pageant that accompanied the “Tulip Festival Parade.” Contestants were sponsored by local businesses that sold flowers to support their candidate. The business that sold the most flowers would have their contestant named the Tulip Parade Queen while the other contestants served as her court. The tradition continued for decades and included the 1966 Queen—Kelli Linville, who grew up to become Mayor of Bellingham.
The Chamber of Commerce cancelled the parade during the Great Depression and WWII. 1947 saw the parade’s revival as the Blossomtime Parade, which changed to the Ski to Sea Grand Parade, and then back to Blossomtime over the years.
Many locals have memories of the parade – having performed in the parade – in their high school marching band, on a float and in an antique car. And even more people have been able to pick their favorite viewing spot and sit back and enjoy the parade year after year.
Whether you watch for the high school marching bands, the floats, the antique cars and trucks, the police and fire vehicles, the clowns in little cars or the dance groups, there is something special for everyone at the Blossomtime Parade.