Alabaster holds first homecoming parade in decades
Published 10:14 pm Wednesday, September 25, 2013
By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor
Alabaster School Superintendent Dr. Wayne Vickers, who moved to Alabaster last summer, had a hard time believing the city hadn’t held a homecoming parade in nearly half a century before Sept. 25.
“From someone new to Alabaster, I wouldn’t have known you have not had a (homecoming) parade here in 50 years,” Vickers told the thousands gathered in Larry Simmons Stadium following the parade. “It is excellent for our football players, our coaches, our band and the students to see the number of people that are filling our stadium tonight.”
Shelby County Historical Society President Bobby Joe Seales, a lifetime Alabaster resident who attended the parade, confirmed the city’s last homecoming parade was held in 1966.
“For the first one in 50 years, y’all did not disappoint,” Mayor Marty Handlon said. “Y’all came out large and in charge.”
During the event, more than 40 floats traveled from Thompson Middle School down Warrior Drive, turned right onto Thompson Road and left onto Alabama 119 before making their way back to Larry Simmons Stadium.
Following the parade, the crowd made its way to the stadium for a community pep rally featuring the THS band, Alabaster school cheerleaders and football players. Before the THS varsity football team walked onto the field, May Goggins and Sky Cofer rode their horses onto the field, spiking a spear into the ground and waving the THS flag.
For THS head football coach Mike Montgomery and his players, the community’s support did not go unnoticed.
“On behalf of our staff and players, we love you and we appreciate your support,” Montgomery said. “It is a blessing for us to be ambassadors for our city.”
The THS wrestling team took the award for the most spirited float, Meadow View Elementary School won best theme and the THS senior class float was named the best overall.