OTHO - It's important to give the youngest members of the family something to do while waiting for the parade to start.
Lynelle Powers, of Otho, was taking care of that.
"It's pre-parade fun," she said during a short break to catch her breath from blowing up a couple of beach balls.
-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
Lynelle Powers, of Otho, works on blowing up a red, white and blue beach ball Thursday afternoon while waiting for the Otho Fourth of July parade to get started.
Of course, on the Fourth of July, any old beach ball won't do - hers were bright red, white and blue.
Like many along the route, she was surrounded by family and friends in a familiar bit of shade.
"We're here every year," she said, "It's a family tradition."
The best part, she said, was "Watching these kids have fun and being together."
Nearby, Brant Farrand and Tina Oberg brought along some portable shade. They were keeping cool under the canopy of a golf cart parked along the route.
Both rated their seats highly.
"It's excellent," Farrand said.
Farrand, who serves on the Otho City Council, was happy with the turnout.
"I like to get the town together," he said.
For Oberg, seeing family and friends is one of the highlights of the day, she said.
One of the tallest parade entrants was Evan Pugh, of Otho.
He rode the entire route on one wheel - a unicycle at least 6 feet high.
"I've been riding for about 15 years," he said.
Bill and Connie Thoma, of Fort Dodge, found a place in the shade to watch the passing parade. Their seating, however, was a notch above the standard issue lawn chair.
They simply backed their convertible into a parking spot.
"It's perfect," Bill Thoma said.
Otho's celebration continued with vendors and games in the park and into the evening with a fireworks display.