For some, heading out to the Northwest Montana Fair Parade in Downtown Kalispell is already a tradition.
“I’ve been taking my family to the fair for twenty, thirty years,” said Rod Douglas.
But for others on Friday, it was just the beginning. Chamber staff say close to a hundred different groups marched at the event. Firefighters sounded off, County officials waved and local musicians shared their songs with the crowds.
“I think it’s very important,” said Douglas. “Most of us really look forward to the fair.”
For the kids, bag-fulls of candy were a major draw.
“We get to throw candy to kids and we get to walk around and represent our school,” said Bailey, who was marching with Trinity Lutheran.
“Sometimes there’s candy left on the street so you get to pick it up and put it in your pocket,” said Blake, who was also marching with Trinity Lutheran.
It wasn’t just the youngsters with a sweet tooth.
“My wife can go out and get the candy in the street, fight for the candy with the kids,” joked Whitefish resident Tom Fousek.
Fousek has gone to the fair for the past eight years, but watched the parade for the first time on Friday.
“It’s pretty good for a town this size.”
As the spectacle winded down around 11:00 pm, some were left wanting more, but walked away with smiles on their faces, a reason good enough to keep a local tradition alive.