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Stamford Balloon Parade Thrills Viewers

Big Bird leans down over thrilled crowds at the UBS Parade Spectacular in Stamford Sunday afternoon.
Big Bird leans down over thrilled crowds at the UBS Parade Spectacular in Stamford Sunday afternoon. Photo Credit: Alissa Smith

STAMFORD, Conn. – Even with strong winds that pushed balloons close to the crowds, residents and visitors were thrilled Sunday afternoon with the annual Stamford USB Parade Spectacular.

“I like watching the balloons come by,” said 8-year-old Sara Sabin, who came from Trumbull with her brother Joey, 7, and sister Samantha, 6, to see the parade. “I also like the music and the dances.”

When Sara was asked what balloon she liked best, she said Mr. Potato Head, because she had the toy at home.  Her siblings liked watching the motorcycles go by at the start of the parade the most because, their mother Gina Sabin said, their father is a Westport Police Officer who drives a motorcycle.

“It’s the start of the holiday season,” Gina Sabin said, which was why they made the 40-minute drive from Trumbull.

For 10-year-old Shira Cohen from Stamford, she said the whole parade is her favorite part, but, “I love all the balloons.”  She said that normally her family goes to see the balloons get inflated and that she loves watching the balloons get big.

Two new balloons joined this year’s parade, Red from the TV show “Fraggle Rock” and Dr. Seuss’ title character "The Lorax." Also new this year was a marching band from Portland, Oregon, MarchForth Marching Band, which showed up in colorful costume and unlike most bands didn’t march in any kind of formation.

Alan Kalter of the "Late Show with David Letterman" was the parade's emcee.  He said MarchForth was unlike any other marching band.

Kalter was joined as emcee by Mayor Michael Pavia, who said, as the balloon of Super Grover went by the main stage, that Grover was a valued member of the police force in Stamford.

Did you go to the parade on Sunday? Tell us what you thought by leaving a comment below or sharing your photos of the parade by emailing reporter Alissa Smith.

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