The Phelan Phamily Phun Days Parade returned to the Tri-Community on Saturday, October 7th, 2023, with this year’s Grand Marshall, Snowline School District Superintendent of Schools Ryan Holman presenting the parade theme, “Building Dreams, Friendships, and Memories.”
Notably, it was perfect weather for a hometown parade; all the elements were in order for a Phun-packed afternoon of games, music by “The Nomads,” a Phun Zone, and the famous Champagne Classic Car Show. Phelan Phamily Phun Days has come a long way from its 1960s community barbeque and later “The Phelan Phling.” The popular high desert festival has grown into a yearly community event with family activities, entertainment, and its own parade. Snowline Superintendent Ryan Holman was handing out candy to the cheering spectators and wishing all a great morning from a beautiful brand-new Jeep Rubicon from Victorville Motors. Sporting a new Jeep Wrangler, Publisher/Editor Don Fish Jr. of the Tri-Community NewsPlus was close behind in a second Wrangler, representing the Phelan Chamber Of Commerce, while the procession staged for the start. The horses from Dusty Spurs Gymkhana and Flying High appeared eager to get the show on the road.
Phelan Road became the stage for this year’s parade from Johnson Road to Sheep Creek. There was no shortage of exciting parade entries in Phelan. The spirit of fellowship was everywhere, with The Fountain of Living Waters Four Square Church spreading love, cool bottled water, and candy from their balloon-decorated trailer winning Second Place Non-Equestrian Awards. Sunset Little League was well represented by their T-Ball players from the Spring and Fall leagues. Irene Dance Studios performed along the parade route for all to enjoy. Baldy Mesa Elementary won the Phelan Phamily Phun Days Parade award for “Best Theme,” with “The Sweepstakes Winner” going to Rancho Don Cruz.
Daniel Meredith Plumbing transported the Royal Miss Phelan Court trailer, winning the First Place Non-Equestrian Award with their impressive convoy of service vehicles. The safest place in town, San Bernardino Sheriffs and Volunteer Mounted Rescue were on hand for the day and ready to prance down the parade route. When you have a school bus full of Snowline Transportation bus drivers and their families blowing bubbles, cheering, and waving, you need to get a bigger bus.
Serrano High’s Firefighter Career Technical Education students came equipped and looked ready for anything. The Serrano High School Cheer girls posed politely for the press before winning the Parades First Place Award in the Marching category, with the Serrano Cadet Corps receiving Second Place. The hum of the High Desert Antique Power Association’s vintage tractors warmed up the “Americana” in the parade goer’s hearts, winning the Third Place Non-Equestrian Award. What could be more patriotic than the Future Farmers of America pulling a trailer full of local future farmers on hay bales? How about Cub Scout Pack 351 marching in cadence with the Third Place winning Serrano High School Band and Serrano Cheer wooing the crowd through downtown Phelan?
Horses with expert riders were prancing down Phelan Road, strutting their stuff past Rick’s Auto, Phelan Market, and The Skillet Café. This year’s parade showed the historic and modern role of horses in our community. Few animals can draw applause from crowds, like a horse with a rider in a hometown parade. From neighboring Hesperia, the lovely “Young Miss Hesperia Wranglers” displayed some dazzling pink chaps and tack on their parade entry while saying “Howdy” to everyone, drawing their applause.
Fifty horses strong, the Mexican Cowboys, “Jinetes del Desierto,” were proudly showing off their beautiful Friesian horses from Holland. With their Gypsy and Quarter horses, the “Charros” were dressed in traditional outfits and made quite a statement trotting down Phelan Road. Leslie Davis from ETI Corral 88 was sporting the American Flag on her horse, “Thunder,” and received the Second-place Equestrian trophy. Dusty Spurs Gymkhana rode away with the First-place Equestrian Phelan Phun Days Parade trophy. Third Place Equestrian awards went to Flying High. San Bernardino County Fire Engine ME-10 Rescue Paramedic with Cal-Fire followed the caravan to the finish with much fanfare.
One thing is for sure: the old adage, “Everyone loves a parade.” still holds true in Phelan, California, USA. Congratulations to the Parade Winners:
Sweepstakes: Rancho Don Cruz
Best Theme: Baldy Mesa Elementary
1st – Dusty Spurs
2nd – ETI Corral
3rd – Flying High
1st- Daniel Meredith Plumbing
2nd – Fountain of Living Water Church
3rd – HD Antique Tractors
1st- Serrano High School Cheer
2nd- Serrano Cadet Corps
3rd – Snowline School District Marching Band