‘Sparky,’ the 4th of July Association’s mascot, was there in a new firecracker suit and so were a host of other marchers for the parade down Central Street today marking Evanston’s 150th anniversary.

The political contingent was headed up by Gov. Pat Quinn and included State Sen. Daniel Biss, U.S. Rep Jan Schakowsky and State Reps. Robyn Gabel and Laura Fine along with most Evanston aldermen.

The event also featured the usual cast of muscial groups on floats, including the North End Bunco, Parchesi & Weight-Dropping Auxliary.

Crowd-pleasers from out of town included the Cavaliers Drum & Bugle Corp and the Jesse White Tumbling Team.

After several days of almost chilly weather, the sun broke through the clouds to warm spectators for most of the two-hour event.

The parade left some questions unanswered — like whether the kids from the YWCA’s Flying Fish swimming program were trying to suggest that their hair was turning green from too much chlorine in the pool.

But for many marchers, like these two from the Evanston Escola de Samba, it was just a great day to dance their way down the street.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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