What’s It All About?
There are parades…and then there’s Northampton Neighbors’ DoozyDo Parade. Inspired by Pasadena’s Doo-Dah Parade, a zany alternative to the traditional Rose Bowl Parade, this Fall’s DoozyDo Parade will put the fun in fundraiser with a joyful, inclusive, unconventional celebration in–and of–the City of Northampton. Like the Hot Chocolate Run and Monte’s March, the DoozyDo Parade is an opportunity to come together for a compelling cause. It will raise awareness and financial support for Northampton Neighbors, a volunteer-based organization providing free programs and services to help seniors live independent, engaged lives in their homes and communities.
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The parade will feature groups (teams) of participants of all ages, as well as bands, floats, antique cars, and representatives from local nonprofits and businesses—all celebrating together. Led by Retired Sgt. Andy Trushaw with a 1960s-era Northampton police cruiser and the Expandable Brass Band, the parade highlights will include: Grand-ish Marshals Bill Dwight and Kelsey Flynn; Gertrude the Gargoyle, who once kept watch over Main Street from the roof of the Words & Pictures Museum; bagpipers; Pioneer Valley Roller Derby skaters; staff from Forbes Library (with a golfcart); The Northampton School Committee; and Northampton High School’s Band; with more to come.
Support for Northampton Neighbors will be generated through donations from business sponsors, along with contributions from individuals and teams marching in the parade.
Northampton Neighbors’ DoozyDo Parade will:
- Raise funds to help Northampton Neighbors continue providing free services, programs, and events for seniors in our community
- Increase awareness about Northampton Neighbors (Our 1,200 members represent only 20 percent of the city’s older population.)
- Foster connections between generations, between businesses and nonprofits, and between neighbors and neighborhoods
- Challenge preconceived notions about older people
- Provide an opportunity to celebrate together after the isolation and stress of life during COVID
- Strengthen existing community ties and create new ones
- Introduce a joyful (and hopefully recurring) cultural event to the city we love
Event Day Details
- When: Saturday, September 17, 2022, at 11am, rain or shine!
- Location: Downtown Northampton, MA. The parade will begin outdoors at the Northampton Center for the Arts at 33 Hawley Street and end outside the Academy of Music.
- End Time: Who knows? This is our first time, but probably by around 1pm.
DoozyDo Grand-ish Marshals
Bill is a former video clerk, retired pie server and recovering City Councilor.
Kelsey is an improviser and stand-up comic who’s performed all over the Pioneer Valley and beyond. She’s laughed with audiences at a former Chinese restaurant in Hadley, Caroline’s on Broadway, and many an American Legion in between. Kelsey also teaches stand-up/storytelling at Happier Valley Comedy and runs an open mic there on the third Friday of every month. Sometimes, you can still hear her on 93.9 the River, WRSI-FM. She lives with her wife and two kids in Northampton.
Dennis Lee has been around a microphone since 1966. For 23 years he helped wake the community up with morning radio in Northampton. Mrs. Lee’s son Dennis is a DH-a designated ham who loves parades.
The Lineup (so far)
- The parade’s Grand-ish Marshals Kelsey Flynn, Bill Dwight and valley voice Dennis Lee, riding in style in a 1970s-era Oldsmobile Convertible
- Parade Mascot Gertrude the Gargoyle
- Bagpiper Sgt. Rory McLean
- Northampton Neighbors’ Walkie Talkies
- The Expandable Brass Band
- Forbes Library’s Flights of Literature
- The Northampton School Committee’s Children First
- Members of Northampton Neighbors
- Paintbox Theater’s Running the Rapids
- The Cancer Connection Thrift Store Treasures
- Woodstar’s Competitive Coffee Drinkers and Liars Club
- Friends of Northampton Trails
- The Eric Carle Musem’s Very Hungry Caterpillar (VW) Bug
- All Out Adventures
- The Village People
- The Northampton Senior Center
- Applied Mortgage’s There’s No Place Like Home
- The FIGs (Northampton Neighbors’ Food Interest Group)
- Mountain River Taiko Drummers
- Northampton YMCA
- Visage Salon’s Doozy Hair-Do’s
- Kathy Borawski and Luigi! (1969 Fiat 500L)
- Noah’s Ark (a 90+-year-old fire engine) + vintage cars
- The Northampton Survival Center Carrot Crew
- The Bad Mittens
- Historic Northampton
- WRSI and Bubbles
- Northampton Neighbors’ Gardening Interest Group
- Crazy Jane’s Creatures …
- … And you? (We invite you to join the parade!)
The DoozyDo Parade is fully supported by The Greater Northampton Chamber of Commerce.
Important: All teams are kid-friendly and apolitical, as judged by the parade organizers, because, like Northampton Neighbors itself, we want everyone to feel welcome at the DoozyDo Parade, whether they are parading down the street or watching from the sidewalks.
Come for the Parade. Stay for the cause.
About Northampton Neighbors
Northampton Neighbors was founded to help each other maintain independence, dignity, and joy over time as we age—and engage—in place. We provide services and support for seniors in our community as well as opportunities to connect and share through programs and events. Membership is 100% fee-free, and we welcome people of all ages from every corner of the community to participate in whatever ways feel most meaningful to them. Learn More