Burbank on Parade was the best place to be Saturday for those who love to people-watch.
Where else could one see Rep. Adam Schiff and Ronald McDonald at the same event?
City officials like Mayor Dave Golonski and school district VIPs, led by Superintendent Jan Britz, waved to the more than 10,000 estimated people lining Olive Avenue from Keystone to Lomita streets. Many of the more than 100 entries kept to the parade committee's theme, "Let's Go to the Movies!" The grand marshal was radio talk-show host Tim Conway Jr.
Rita Smith has lived in Burbank for 30 years and has seen about a dozen of the Burbank parades. Her daughter Andrea, who attends John Burroughs High School, liked the Burbank Burroughs Alumni Band and Cheerleading Squad the best.
"And I liked when the airport fire truck shot off their stream of water and all the kids came running from both sides of the street so they could be in the water," Smith said. "It reminded me of kids in New York City in the middle of summer opening up a fire hydrant and running through it."
But nothing tops the chance to rub shoulders with friends and neighbors, she added.
"It is so much fun because you see people you know and people you work with and socialize with, not only going down the middle of the street, but hanging out at the parade as well," she said.
One of the crowd-pleasers was the Racer's Edge Indoor Karting entry - employees drove the company's electric go-karts down the parade route. Kids on the sidewalks couldn't contain their excitement and came out in the street to get a closer look, said General Manager Bryan Rush.
"The crowd was great; at one point, kids were in the street surrounding us, we couldn't drive," he said. "The kids were really excited."
Mary Culver, a member of the Reel Cowboys, was singing on a float with several other people, all of whom are involved in the movie business, she said. Culver's uncle started the movie studios in Culver City more than 100 years ago.
"We were playing '40s and '50s Western music from the time of Dale Evans and the crowd absolutely loved it!" she said. "We had people follow us over afterwards and say hello."
Francyn Serrano rode on a truck and sang Girl Scout songs with fellow members of Burbank Girl Scout Troop 419.
"It was fun," she said about riding in the parade. "My favorite part was when we got to wave at the kids and a lot of people waved back."
Carey Briggs, president of Burbank on Parade, called the event a success.
"Everything went really well and it's all thanks to the volunteers who put in a huge amount of hours to make this come true for all the citizens of Burbank. And we are always looking for more volunteers," he said.
New this year was the addition of the food trucks in the parking lot behind Joslyn Adult Center.
"This is an effort in trying to bring back the old celebration in the park after the end of the parade," Briggs said.
JOYCE RUDOLPH can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.