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Ready for the Tucson Rodeo Parade

Posted at 4:37 PM, Feb 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-24 20:40:13-05

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) -- Final preparations are underway for the 91st Annual Tucson Rodeo Parade. An estimated 150,000 people are expected to line the streets Thursday morning.

On Wednesday afternoon, dozens of float decorators made their way to the grounds. Herb Wagner, one of the parade organizers, says there are around 136 entries this year. Dozens of them include historic wagons and buggies that are on display at the Tucson Rodeo Parade Museum.

"We try to keep them as authentic as possible, but also keep them maintained so they are safe for use in the parade," Wagner said. 

One of the wagons was used by the Tucson Police Department back in 1897. Wagner says TPD used the wagon to transport prisoners to Yuma, and the trip would take around 22 days. The Tucson Fire Department also has a wagon that will be featured in the parade.

"We know the Tucson High band was in the very first parade because we know in the lineups we found it says high school band," Wagner said. "And there was the only one high school band at that time and that was Tucson High."

One of the groups decorating is the El Rio Nuevo Community Health Center. Leticia Cota says preparations began months ago, and they try to make their wagon as colorful as possible.

"I like the camaraderie with everybody," Cota said. "I also like getting everything together, sometimes it gets a little stressful but in the end it's really worth it."
The parade begins at 9 a.m., with entertainment beginning at 7:30 a.m. If you want to buy tickets to sit in the grandstands, organizers suggest showing up before 8 a.m.
Here is a link to the parade route and schedule.