Winners announced after Oaklawn's annual Pet, Bike & Wagon Parade

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July 4, 2015

Winners announced after Oaklawn’s annual Pet, Bike & Wagon Parade

MARSHALL – The names of nine overall winners were announced Monday after the 2016 Oaklawn Hospital Pet, Bike & Wagon Parade.

The parade stepped off on Independence Day morning at Brooks Memorial Fountain, launching holiday events at Marshall’s Fountain Circle.

Ribbons were presented to all participants, plus first-, second- and third-place honors in each of the chief categories, as follows:

Pets: First – Greta Hetke of Tekonsha, with “Ollie”; second – Sophie Mills of Marshall, with “Belle”; third – Avarie Gaona of Marshall, with “Maple.”

Bikes: First – Elizabeth Heatwole of Marshall; second – Liam Bolt of Mattawan; third – Makenna Groeneveld of Marshall.

Wagons: First – Katie Orr of Battle Creek; second – Violet Groeneveld of Marshall; third – Norah Lyons of Waukegan, Ill.

Winners were selected by a team of judges that included Mayor Jack Reed and his wife Lisa Reed; Calhoun County District Judge Paul Beardslee; Oaklawn physician JT Thomas and his wife Annie Thomas; and Oaklawn Chief Financial Officer Gregg Beeg.

Dave and Vicki DeGraw of Marshall served as co-chairmen of the event, and David DeGraw was the announcer during the proceedings.

Theresa Shippell of Oaklawn’s Development Department, organizer of this year’s parade, said the turnout was as large as it ever has been, and said the warm and pleasant weather was likely to have contributed to the widespread participation.

Children ages 3 through 12 were invited to create costumes and decorations that reflected the Independence Day celebration. All animals had to be properly caged or leashed, and all bike riders properly helmeted.

The parade was followed at the Fountain Circle by a lunch featuring barbecued chicken, hotdogs and ice cream, and a performance by the Marshall Rotary Community Band.

“This is classic small-town America on the Fourth of July, and we love it,” Shippell said. “We had a wonderful group of volunteers for the barbecue that followed on the lawn around the fountain. We’re very grateful to everyone for all the help we received, and we hope everyone had a great time.”