I put my Model T with WW 2 Veterans driving,in the big upcoming Memorial Day Parade they wanted some fun ideas. I have read about stopping the car and turning off the engine, having someone rapidly spin the hand crank without engaging it, then stand up and watch in surprise as the engine starts. Also they were asking how to make a puff of smoke and a bang from the exhaust and how to make the big bug eyes with eye lashes on the front head lamps. Any ideas appreciated except tipping the car up on the rear wheels These guys are in the low 90's. The driver is a 93 years old Marine Aviator who still flies
If your car will "free Start" easily then have it stall have the passenger get out give it a mean look kick the tire and the driver turn the key.. that would be funny.
Flag holder from Bob's
Get some red white and blue bunting and weave it in and out of the spokes on each wheel.
A shot of our car last of July parade. Didn't do the crape paper in the spokes that time, but have before and it looks good. Pain to do, but looks good.
Here are how we did our eyes.
The Veterans talked me into driving my T in the 4th of July parade last year, I had to stop and let the Veteran's float get ahead of me from time to time, once, I killed the engine starting out, so I had to hop off and start the car, the crowd liked that better than anything. Next time, I am just going to shut the engine off each time I get caught up to the float ahead of me. As far as faking a hand start, that is not much different than making it into a clown car.
Hey Doug I like that! I bet the kids thought it was awesome.
Prior to its restoration in the early 90s, my parents' 1914 T was last used in parades during WWII. It had jokes and slogans painted on the body, including some in support of the war such as "LEND LEASE USA" and "VIVA LA FRANCE". Some of the jokes were "Ford too Soon", "Born 1419" and a dashed line painted on the false drivers door that said "Tear on dotted line"
There were others too that I can't remember at the moment...
Here's a color film showing the car in a parade on July 4th 1942 in Johnsburg MN. Some of the writing can be seen pretty well at the 0:45 mark.
There are other T's in the film as well.
Wow, great film.
That was wonderful. Sure does seem that parades were a whole lot more fun back then than they are now—even if some of those "floats" look a little bit dangerous. The thing I notice about the people is the style of dress and feeling of optimism. That manner of expression seemed to die out after the JFK assassination.
Even though that parade took place during some of the darkest days of WWII (July 1942), the joy of that momentary escape from harsh reality is very plain to see.
Since the mid-sixties, as a nation, I think we've become more cynical and suspicious. The world is no more a dangerous place than when Hitler, Mussolini and Tojo were on the rampage, but somehow, things feel darker. For instance, when I was a kid, I played outside and didn't come home until sundown and nobody worried about it. Nowadays, parents don't allow their kids to play outside the confines of the backyard. No more stoop-ball, no more stick-ball or touch-football in the street. And on Hallowe'en, whereas costumed trick-or-treaters used to flood the streets and sidewalks, now my doorbell rings maybe three times and that's about it.
Just to add a bit to what you just said Bob, when I was a kid in the '40's-'50's, my big thing was my bike. The first real expression of independence for a kid I think. Nowadays, seems like kids have absolutely no interest in bikes,....'course we were not bothered with helmets in those days either! And that brings me to one other thing that I think has made a big difference,.....we have much too much government, sticking their noses into our lives, protecting us from ourselves. And by the way, speaking of parades, the last couple parades I participated in did not allow the throwing of candy for the little kids. Too hazardous I guess and just one more case of too many lawyers and lawsuits and everybody is afraid of getting sued! Yeah, it's a whole different society we live in now, and I guess we just have to put up with it. I've noticed how often the subject of possible legislation that would ban our old, dangerous and hazardous Model "T's off of the streets too! (???)
I'd better quit this as I didn't mean for this to become a "rant", but it sure is headed that way!
I have to agree, that parade film that Derek posted sure looked like a lot more fun than the parades of today!
Oops,....meant to say HOW OFTEN THE SUBJECT COMES UP ON THE FORUM,....."proofread" BEFORE you post,....right?
For better or worse (I don't want to get political here), we certainly have more laws and regulations now than ever. That necessarily means less liberty.
For instance, the government is all over the room where I'm supposed to have the most privacy and autonomy; the bathroom. They're in my shower-head, telling me how much water I can use to wash; they're in my toilet bowl, telling me how much I can flush and they're in the light socket over my shaving mirror, telling me to use that squiggly, spiral bulb—for better or worse.
Oh, and for better or worse, the former mayor of New York City decided we shouldn't be allowed to purchase soda pop in sizes larger than 32 ounces because that amount of sugar isn't good for us. And in San Francisco, for better or worse, it's illegal to sell or buy goldfish because it's cruel to the fish. Now, I'm not saying that these things shouldn't be; I'm just looking around and, for reasons of nostalgia, noticing the way things have progressed—for better or worse, of course.
Hey Bob, you better be careful, that sort of comment can snowball, for example, the FDA has decided that it is better to dump the grain used in making beer into landfills rather than feeding it to livestock. Their reasoning is it will stop the Chinese from putting melamine in it.
You forgot to say, "For better or worse." We don't want to inject politics into these posts.
Sorry, but I could not see any thing better coming from filling up land fills, increasing the cost of beer, beef and bacon. OK I thought of something better, everything is better with bacon.
Seth, I have a speaker mounted on the running board for the parades and we play music from CARS. You should hear and see the kids light up!
Great video Derek. The cars parked along the parade route on the sides of the roads created a pretty good show too.
Great video. It looks like some of the small town parades around here. Drive from one end of town to the other and turn around and do it again. I love the other clip of the brass era T tractor mowing the football field at Adams High School.
I wonder how many kids at that parade had instilled in them a lifelong fear of clowns. Such grotesque masks and agressive behavior toward eachother and especially toward that downed horse, made me cringe. Sorry, but except for the T's, I did not like the film. Can't please 'em all.
Thanks for posting.
The whole thing looked pretty creepy to me. I thought it must have been a cultural thing.
I like the ideas thanks. Questions. Can anyone send me a good picture of the head lamp eyes and eye lashes ? I like that idea and playing the cars music
My grandkids like the cars eyes on your car Doug.
One thing not mentioned here is the participant's attitude and appearance. Be happy! Smile! Wave! Act like you're having a great time while you sweat-out the T overheating!
I downloaded a picture of one of the cars cartoon characters eyes and enlarged them and printed them. It is hard to tell from a distance but they are not just black circles. They actually have irises and pupils.
This is what we did..
Very pretty young ladies you have loaded in your T for the parade. I sure hope they got ice cream!
The two standing by the car are our granddaughters - They are the most important decoration.
Bob Robb makes an excellent point. We exaggerate the waves to the kids watching. We also make sure we wave directly at the kids sometimes even pointing them out. They really like when the parade notices them.
The last time we were allowed to through candy at the parade was the best, We set up our chairs on the square and threw candy at the floats, we got some interesting reactions. One float had high sides, so you could not see the kids who were throwing candy at the crowd, I was able to land several hands full in their float, and heads popped up to wee where the candy was coming from.
I set it up for our car club to be the the Memorial Day Parade one year in the med 1970s. I had 5 black cars with no decorations. some had flags. The next day a big shot lady came up to me and told me never to do that again. She did not think old cars belonged in the Memorial day parade.
I think they do with flags. save the other fun for the 4th of July.
I can understand part of what the "big shot lady" was thinking because Memorial Day is about remembering what men and women did for our country and acknowledging the freedom we have due to their sacrifice, but "big shot lady" was way out of line.
A Model T with or without flags is part of our heritage - part of the USA experience - part of our remembering.
I entered the T in Kirkwood's Greentree Parade in September 2004. Since that was an election year, we decorated it as a Coolidge campaign car. I drove and Anja passed out copies of a Republican campaign ad I had found in the St Louis Post-Dispatch (on microfilm at the library). I think we took second prize in the car category (which explains the ribbon on the windshield).