UO part of Portland's Grand Floral Parade on Saturday

The City of Roses knows how to throw a parade. The Portland Grand Floral parade will wind through more than four miles of downtown on Saturday, like it has for more than 100 years.

The University of Oregon will sponsor the “We are Oregon” section for the fourth year. The parade entry includes the Duck Truck (designed by UO alumnus Tinker Hatfield), the Duck in a pedicab, more than 50 UO alumni and family, and cheerleaders. New this year is an alumni band, made up of former UO band members and lead by Michael Suskin, who works in IT for the UO in Portland.

The Grand Floral Parade draws an audience of several hundred thousand. It starts at 10 a.m. at the Memorial Coliseum, winds down MLk to Burnside, past the White Stag Block. It goes down Broadway, past Pioneer Courthouse Square, before ending near Lincoln High School.

This year’s parade will feature 14 all-floral floats, 17 marching bands, 19 equestrian units, vintage cars and numerous marching groups. The Grand Marshal is One More Time Around Again Marching Band, one of the largest marching bands in the world, with 440 members stretching over two city blocks. The 2010 Grand Marshal was the Oregon Ducks BCS football team.

For more information about the parade, visit rosefestival.org.

- by Heidi Hiaasen, Public Affairs Communications