Pana Labor Day Parade To Feature Marching IlliniThe highlight of the 80th annual Pana Labor Day Parade will be the appearance of the 350-member University of Illinois Marching Band. The parade, which makes its way through downtown Pana to historic Kitchell Park, will step off at 10:00 a.m., Monday, Sept. 2.This is the third appearance of the Marching Illini in the Pana Parade, touted annually as the “Largest Labor Day Parade in Downstate Illinois.” The band also marched in the 1991 and 1993 parades.“We are extremely proud to have the Marching Illini accept our invitation to march in this year’s parade,” Jim Downs, Pana Labor Day Parade Chairman said. “Pana is one of only three off-campus locations where the band will appear this year.”In addition to marching in the parade, the Marching Illini will perform in concert on Brummett Field on the pana High School campus at 2:00 p.m. Labor Day. The public is invited to attend and the performance is free of charge.A U. of I. senior, Brian Pastor, is the Music Leader in the Squad 1, Baritones, and is a native of Pana. He is the son of Debbie Pastor and the late John Pastor. Also, the current Instrumental Band Director of Pana Schools, Theresa Steiner, was a drum major for the Marching Illini in 2010.The theme for this year’s parade is – appropriately, “Strike Up The Band.”There is no entry fee for floats or units in the parade, except for those political in nature which are charged $25. There is no pre-registration, but there are deadlines for being in place in order to be judged.Floats to be judged should arrive in their appropriate staging area by 7:30 a.m., and be ready to be judged by 8:00. Bikes and novelties should be in their staging area by 9:00 with judging at 9:15 a.m. Labor Day.Prize money for floats in the parade is $500 for first place; $400 for second place; $300 for third; and $200, fourth. Fifth through 8th places pays $175 each and 9th-12th, $150. For places 13-16, prize money is $100 for each place.For novelties, prize breakdown is $25, first; $15, second; and $10, third. For bicycles, $25, first, $15, second; and $10, third.HorsesEntries in the horse competition will assemble at the old Pana Sale Barn parking lot, at Cold Springs Road and Poplar Street, on the south side of Pana. Riders should have their horses ready for judging by 8:00 a.m. the day of the parade.For more information about the parade, contact Jim Downs, parade chairman at 562-3966.
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