It’s billed as Delaware’s oldest 4th of July parade. The Smyrna-Clayton parade along Main Street in Clayton proved in 2011 that it still knows how to attract a crowd.
Thousands gathered before 9 to make sure they had a front row seat to make sure they could see a mix of fire trucks, marching bands, beauty queens and local businesses were a part of the hour long parade organized by the Smyrna-Clayton Fourth of July Committee.
It was also a good way for elected Delaware leaders to get out and greet the crowd. Governor Jack Markell was the first politician to wave to the crowd. He was followed by a group that included: Senator Chris Coons, Senator Tom Carper, Attorney-General Beau Biden, Treasurer Chip Flowers, Auditor Tom Wagner and Lt. Governor Matt Denn.
There were even glimpses of Santa Claus and Elvis, although not together. The parade wrapped up around 11am with a ride along the parade route with a variety of horse teams.
The Clayton part of the day then shifted to Smyrna Park where rides and a variety of contests filled the afternoon until the day ended with fireworks. This year the all volunteer association got a little financial help as M&T Bank agreed to pick up some of the costs of the fireworks. The bank is new to Delaware having completed its take over of Wilmington Trust earlier this year.