Parade Committee Awards Trophies

Kevin Francis Barrett - The whirring gears of the award-winning Rhythmix Cultural Works parade float accompanied the rousing sounds of the Taiko drums and other musical instruments in this year’s July Fourth Parade last Friday.

Rhythmix nails first place four out of past five years

Organizers of the Mayor’s 2014 July Fourth Parade honor the most creative, exciting and energetic of the entries to the parade with trophies each year. Judges chose from among more than 160 entrants to the parade this year.

The top honor each year is the Mayor’s Trophy, which lately has been the sole purview of Rhythmix Cultural Works (RCW), whose collaborative spirit of the Alameda community comes through in the creativity expressed in their appearance in the parade float, which also won first-place honors. RCW won the Mayor’s Trophy or “Best Float” in 2010, 2011 and 2012 and won second-place trophies in 2009 and 2013. RCW earned its fourth Mayor’s Trophy last Friday.

“It takes a village,” said RCW Executive Director Tina Blaine. “We really are building community over here, and the Fourth of July Parade is just one of the many ways to experience that at Rhythmix.” Blaine and the staff at RCW invite members, friends and anyone else who would like to be involved, to join their parade effort each year — likely a big reason for their success.

Other winnners in the floats category were Tomorrow Youth Repertory in second and the Mad Haighters of Haight Avenue in third place.

Best among the vehicles were Lou’s Lagoon Property Services in first, Mark Betz as Charlie Chaplin in second and The Greene Family, also known as The Mixed Greens, in third place.

Best among the bicycle groups were: the Alameda Council Boy Scouts of America in first, the Girls Scouts of Alameda in second and Upcycle Alameda in third place.

Best in the walking and skating group were the Bay Area Circus Arts Festival in first, Encinal Jets Cheerleaders in second and the Alameda High School Cheerleaders in third place.

Best among the school bands were Encinal High School Band in first, Alameda High School Band in second and St. Joseph Notre Dame High School in third place.

Best among the civilian bands were the Saloons in first, the Whippoorwills — Alameda Gay Pride in second and Up and Down in third place.

Best among the equestrians were the Alameda Sheriff Posse, Greer Family Mortuary, Rancho El Afortunado and the Hayward Hills Charros each first in their own categories. Best among the mounted groups were: Rancho El Afortunado in first, The California State Horseman’s Association in second and the Cactus Ranch in third place.

For more on the parade, visit www.myalamedaparade.com.