Tradition, community and spirit at the 67th Annual Mother Goose Parade

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In grand tradition, thousands of people lined Main Street in El Cajon for its 67th Annual Mother Goose Parade. With 100 more groups participating this year, the parade entertained the crowd with balloons, floats, marching bands, clowns and the many civic and community organizations that East County has to offer.

This yearly jump-start for the holidays is one of San Diego’s oldest and largest parades, and this year was no different.

In grand tradition, thousands of people lined Main Street in El Cajon for its 67th Annual Mother Goose Parade. With 100 more groups participating this year, the parade entertained the crowd with balloons, floats, marching bands, clowns and the many civic and community organizations that East County has to offer.

This yearly jump-start for the holidays is one of San Diego’s oldest and largest parades, and this year was no different.

This year’s 2013 Grand Marshall “Shotgun Tom” Kelly received his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame earlier this year after more than 40 years in radio broadcasting and television. Kelly said he was “honored and humbled to be chosen as this year’s Grand Marshall for Mother Goose Parade.”

Kelly said he grew up in San Diego and remembers his parents bringing him to this parade as a child. He said he never though of being in the parade until the 70s, when his career in radio and television brought his first invitation to participate.

“Back then it was the Wells Fargo Stagecoach,” said Kelly. “And do you know what position I rode on the stagecoach? Shotgun!”

Kelly said he has participated in the parade about 30 times, mostly on the stagecoach or in cars, but this year is special as it recognizes his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

“It’s a great celebration,” he said. “It’s kind of like the cherry on a sundae.”

Sen. Joel Anderson said this would be the largest parade the city has seen in three years.

El CajonMayor Bill Wells said this parade originally began as a gift for the kids by businesses for one year, but it caught on and has been a tradition ever since.

“We expect about 35,000 to 40,000 people this year,” said Wells.