“What a way to say thank-you but to have a parade with the Washington community lining the parade route cheering the first-responders and volunteers who are in the parade,” Ruder said. “And the Clydesdales will be there to lead this parade of people who have been heroes to this community.”

WASHINGTON — With the Budweiser Clydesdales in town, it seemed only natural to organize a parade.

And after receiving so much help from first responders and volunteers after the Nov. 17, 2013, tornado, local officials wanted to use the parade as a way to say “thank-you.”

“What a way to say thank-you but to have a parade with the Washington community lining the parade route cheering the first-responders and volunteers who are in the parade,” Ruder said. “And the Clydesdales will be there to lead this parade of people who have been heroes to this community.”

The parade is set to step-off at 10 a.m. from the Washington City Hall, make a swing through the Washington Square area before making its way down the parade route which is Main Street to Jefferson Street to Lincoln Street and on to Washington Park. 

“I think it’s going to be really neat. The parade is one of the first things we wanted to do when Brewers and Budweiser said the Clydesdales were coming here,” Ruder said.

Space for first responder groups to join the parade are still available and can be 

arranged by calling the chamber at 444-9921.

The Clydesdales will be available for viewing from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. today through Saturday and 10 a.m-6 p.m. on Sunday on grounds near Uftring Chevrolet. 

The parade also will serve as the official opening of the Washington Fine Arts Festival which will run from 10 a.m.-5p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 

The Washington Park District is organizing this year’s art festival which will be held near the Grange Shelter.

“We are excited to announce we have over 50 exhibitors who will be bringing their unique, handmade arts to the show,” said Brian Tibbs from the park district in a press release. “Types of art for sale will include glass, photography, jewelry, watercolor and pastel paintings, ceramics, metal and more.”

There will also be live music, children’s activities, bounce houses, a face painter, a caricature artist, along with food and craft vendors.

Shuttle service will be available from the Lincoln School Parking Lot and the Washington Park Lot near the ball diamonds.