Year after year, the Chamber of Commerce hosts its annual Fourth of July parade and people have come to expect the familiar sights -- firefighters, horses, even clowns. But this year the parade may be short a handful of goofballs.
For Kathy Nave, aka Ruffles T. Clown, making people laugh in the annual 4th of July parade is a family tradition. Ruffles and her family of clowns have performed in every parade for the last 29 years, but this year could mark the end of it.
"My kids grew up doing it, my grandkids do it, I hope to continue it when I have great grandkids and we can pass the tradition on for years and years. That's why I'm so sad. If this happens this year, then we're done," said Nave. "The clowns are out of the parade."
This year, the chamber is enforcing its ban on golf carts and ATVs in the parade for safety reasons.
"If we let one person in with golf carts, then I have to let the other 30 people who asked to have golf carts as well then we're running into safety concerns," said Kerry McCullough, parade organizer. "So, safety is our primary concern."
But Nave said without the help of a golf cart to get them around, the clown troupe simply can't do it. The carts not only transport the clowns, but also 300 pounds of candy, as well as their magic tricks.
The magic is in the interaction and Nave said the golf carts allow them to do that.
"I have begged I have pleaded, I've got full insurance so we're fully covered but they just say no" said Nave.
"We definitely want the clowns there, they just have to follow the same rules that everyone else has to follow," said McCullough.
So far, both Rexburg and Pocatello have requested the clowns participate in their Fourth of July parades, with golf carts.
To get an early start on planning your Independence Day festivities, visit http://www.idahofallschamber.com/events/4th-of-july.html.