Painless Parade Planning
Why are Parades Important?
- You have the ability to personally meet and get your name in front of THOUSANDS OF VOTERS
- You have the opportunity to show energy, excitement and support
- By working hard at the parade, you can prove to voters you will work hard if elected
Pre-Parade Planning (2+ Weeks Out)
- Get signed up! Earlier the Better
- Recruit Volunteers – More is Better!
- Order Lapel Stickers
- Order T-Shirts
- Order Signs
- Secure Vehicle to Use
- Book Photographer
- Sound System
Pre-Parade Planning (1 Week Out)
- Doorknock town week before the parade
- Secure lawn sign locations on main street
- Recruit volunteers – more is better!
- Print Parade Program
- Determine Volunteer Meeting Spot (at end of parade)
- Shuttle System to Get People to Parade Unit
- Got Flags?
- Purchase Candy
- Purchase Water/Soda for Volunteers
- Volunteer Reminder Calls (parade line up number if known)
Pre-Parade Planning (Day Before)
- Wash Parade Vehicle
- Load vehicle(s) with all supplies (don’t forget umbrellas!)
- Communicate parade line up number to volunteers
SHOW TIME! – Day of Parade
- Signs go up early – 3 plus hours before parade
- Arrive at designated meeting spot a minimum of 90 minutes before parade starts
- Candidate greets volunteers as they arrive
- Move parade vehicle(s) and signs, candy, water/soda to line up number and volunteers begin to decorate
- Distribute t-shirts to volunteers as they arrive and begin to shuttle them to line up area
- Last shuttle leaves 30-45 minutes before parade starts and brings remaining volunteers and supplies. Drop them off and return to meeting spot at end of parade route
- 60 minutes before parade starts, candidate, photographer and volunteers walk the parade
- Volunteers sticker both sides of street
- Candidate casually works crowd – until parade starts – shaking hands with people on both sides of street – this is prime time for photographs!
- Candidate joins unit and works parade again from beginning until end
- One volunteer is the “barker” who announces the candidate along parade route
- Other volunteers wave signs, pass out lapel stickers and candy, hoot, holler and make noise
- It’s a parade, not a funeral procession – have fun!
End of Parade
- THANK THE CANDIDATE (who should be physically and emotionally exhausted if they’ve worked hard)
- THANK THE VOLUNTEERS
- Collect t-shirts from volunteers to be used at next parade (better yet, volunteers walk around at the town celebration all day wearing your t-shirt!)
- Disassemble parade unit(s)
Parade DO’S & DONT’S
- Candidate ALWAYS walks the parade route
- Hustle back and forth from one side of the street to the other mee?ng voters – show them you will work hard!
- Don’t fall behind and get separated from your unit!
- Be organized!
- There are hundreds or thousands of voters waiting to meet you – avoid the classic parade mistake of standing around and talking to volunteers or other candidates before the parade starts – USE THIS TIME TO MEET VOTERS
- You should not join your unit until the parade starts
Parade Photo MUST-HAVES
- Large group of supporters holding signs (near unit)
- Small groups of supporters holding signs
- Candidate shaking hands with people along parade route (take many of these)
- Candidate with military honor guard (1st in line)
- Candidate with police/fire/EMT/ (2nd in line)