88th Annual Texas Rose Festival parade, Queen’s Tea brings people back together

Published: Oct. 16, 2021 at 5:12 PM CDT
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - The 88th Annual Texas Rose Festival parade brought glitz and glamour to the streets of Tyler this morning. After a year-long hiatus due to COVID-19, streets were lined with people ready to celebrate. More than 120 entries participated in the parade.

Because Tyler is the City of Roses, it only seemed fitting to have floats and cars decked out in roses and all sorts of colors to honor the rose industry and celebrate the city. Custom parade floats, color guards, bands, car clubs, dance teams, and more took to the streets.

“I used to come every year to bring my kids, but when they all got grown and moved away, I stopped coming. This is my first time coming in probably within the last 15 to 16 years,” said Debrah Miller.

Miller said she was in it as a twirler when she was eight.

“I think it’s good for Tyler itself. You can see how everything has grown because back when I was in the parade, it was so small, but now it has grown,” Miller said. “We have so many high schools and bands and everything coming through to make it nice where you can enjoy.”

Miller wasn’t the only one in awe of the talent, fashion, and variety. Sharon Veilleux is originally from New Jersey. She moved to Texas in 1975. This is her first time at the Rose Festival Parade.

“Seeing the clown on the stilts was really exciting. I also liked seeing the Shriners on the little fire trucks and little wagons,” Veilleux said. “The bands, seeing the bands, they’re excellent. The outfits the girls are wearing, the floats, these dresses are gorgeous.”

Aneesia Blackburn was part of the parade festivities. She’s a Southern Belle with Tyler Legacy High School.

“We performed at the pre-parade, and we did our traditional high kick routine, which was pretty fun and especially since it’s my senior year, and this is my last time being with my team members,” Blackburn said.

Following the parade, the city joined Queen Anna Hallmark and her court for Queen’s Tea in the Rose Garden. There were pink roses all over and photo opportunities for all.

You can visit the Rose Festival arts, crafts, and plant fair and sale at Bergfeld Park tomorrow, and check out the rose display at the Rose Garden from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday.

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