The Somers Parade Committee has submitted their report of the 2022 parade.
The Somers Parade Committee began meeting in January to plan this year’s Independence Day Parade. Since there were still Kenosha County health restrictions for indoor activities due to COVID-19, we decided to not have the Ice Cream Social. We chose “Celebrate the Red, White & Blue in 2022!” as our theme and Ted & Sue Demicchi as our Grand Marshal. The parade committee consists of the following volunteers: J. Schantek, Ben Harbach, Al Ferber and Vern Katten.
Safety of parade participants and parade-goers was our first issue of concern. We worked closely with Kenosha Sheriff’s Department to try to ensure the safety of all. The weather forecast loomed with possible showers, but held off until the end of the parade and didn’t dampen the spirits of parade participants or parade-goers! We enjoyed the partial cloud cover and mid-80 degree day.
The Kenosha Running Club kicked things off at 1 :15 p.m., running the route from the intersection of Highways E & H to Somers Elementary. At 1:25 p.m., volunteers from Somers Elementary handed out approximately 5,000 flags donated by David Leet Post #552 to parade-goers. Ron Bailey of Silverspoon Entertainment deejayed during staging at SLHS from noon to 2 p.m. and traditionally began the parade with the “Star-Spangled Banner.” At 2 p.m. sharp, the Somers Fire and Rescue Department along with several local departments blared their sirens.
The Veterans section of the parade included: The American Legion Color Guard Post #522 and veterans in vehicles, Mi-T Bagpiper Michael O’Connell, VFW Post #7308 & Auxiliary, Tom Giles, Navy Club Ship 40, Julius Mianecki, Daughters of the Revolution, and Lot 31 Auto Sales.
Parade Marshals for 2022 were Ted and Sue Demicchi followed by Richard Krause transporting the SLHS Student Council..
The Mike Schneider Polka band led off the political entries. Somers Village Board rode in a trailer followed by Municipal Judge Bob Kupfer, Kenosha Sheriff’s Department vehicles, County Executive Samantha Kerkman, the Democratic Party of Kenosha float, Rebecca Matoska-Mentink, Teri Jacobson, Representative Tip McGuire, and Senator Bob Wirch. Being a political election year, there were also several candidates: Nedweski, Zoerner, Cochran, Gonzalez, Rowe and Honold. The Republican Party of Kenosha also entered a float.
General Parade entries included a patriotic Snap-on float, U-W Parkside, Walmart, Kenosha Kingfish, Jim Buskirk, Culver’s, Kenosha’s Fairest of the Fair, GTC LEA Squad, Miss Kenosha, Angels of Hope, Miss Bristol, Somers Chargers 4-H Club, Jim Gourley, SE WI Paranormal Investigative Team, First Student Bus Company, A Cure for HHT float, Proko Funeral Home, Car Corral, Jersey Mike’s, Just Between Friends, CYT and BBQ Productions.
A few antique cars and classic jeeps were enjoyed by parade-goers followed by several tow trucks from Don’s, Jensen’s and Pro Towing. We ended with tractors driven by local farmers to add to the rural atmosphere of our agricultural community.
This year’s paid entertainment included the Mike Schneider Polka Band, MGV Harmonia, Rambler Band, Elkhorn Lion’s Club Car, Uncle Sam & Libby Stiltwalkers, Arik the Wandering Juggler, Milwaukee Tumbler’s and River City Rhythm. Danny Upchurch of Ta-Da Entertainment amused parade-goers with his robotic dog/tractor along the parade route by the Village Hall. In all there were 96 entries. We are always looking for new performers to add to the parade, especially musical acts and marching bands.
Somers Independence Day Parade is solely funded by the generous support of the following sponsors: Albor Restaurant Group, LLC (Taco Bell), Andrea & Orendorff, Baxter & Woodman, Tashe Bozinovski, Breg Services (Bear Development), Davison Law Firm, Dejno’s Trucking, Dooley & Associates, Draeger-Langendorf Funeral Home, First Industrial Realty, Firehouse Performance, Hansen’s Pool & Spa, Ben & Bette Harbach, Hawthorn Apartments, Highland Industrial, LLC, Huck Realty, Hob Nob, Bob Kupfer, Lot 31 Auto Sales, Johns Disposal, Kwik Trip, Lifeline Billing Systems, Liftpro, LLC, LineX of Kenosha, Jackie & TG Nelson, Mark Niccolai, Nielsen, Madsen & Barber, Karl Ostby, Pritzker Archives & Memorial Park Center, Proko Funeral Home, Reesman’s Excavating & Grading, Riley Construction, 7-Eleven, Gregg Sinnen, Smet Roofing, Stark Paving, Suburban Garden Center, Tithof Tile & Marble and one anonymous donor. Pat’s Services gives us a discount on portable, handicapped restrooms we place along the parade route. Shoreland Lutheran High School and Somers Elementary allow us to use their properties for staging, the end of the parade and parking.
The 2023 Somers Independence Day Parade will be on Tuesday, July 4th at 2 p.m. The Ice Cream Social (hopefully) will follow the parade at approximately 3:15 p.m. in the Village Hall. We welcome volunteers interested in committing to planning the parade with us next year. Volunteers on this committee meet once a month from January to July. If interested in being a part of this committee so we keep this Somers tradition, please contact J. Schantek at 262-818-4448. We contact veterans and entertainment, communicate with businesses and local area institutions, write grants, publicize, and plan staging and line up. Seeing the excitement of Somers residents and parade-goers is worth every second of the time and dedication involved!
Somers Parade Committee
A full copy of the report is available here.