Two individuals who have been instrumental in getting the new concert stage and event center project rolling will serve as grand marshals of the 2012 Washington Fair Parade.
Ron Unnerstall and Gary Terschluse of Washington Engineering & Architecture — which designed the event facility at no charge — will lead the annual parade.
The parade will take place Sunday, July 29, at 5 p.m. It is one of two pre-Fair events held. The other is a run/walk.
Chamber officials estimate the design work would have cost about $45,000.
The facility, which is under construction, will house a 5,000-square-foot reinforced concrete main stage, a 1,200-square-foot high-ceiling storage area, an 800-square-foot recreation room, a 400-square-foot office area, restrooms, loading docks and driveways and paved parking for 15 to 20 vehicles.
In addition to being used during the Fair, the multi-use facility will be available throughout the year for park department or school programs and other events.
Fair Chairman Dale Westhoff and his co-chair Al Behr recommended that Unnerstall and Terschluse be name grand marshals and the parade committee agreed.
“The committee is excited about the selection,” said Jennifer Hasting, parade chairman. “We will probably have them riding in a covertible near the front of the parade.”
Fair coordinator Jennifer “JB” Giesike said the Fair Board felt strongly in recognizing Unnerstall and Terschluse for all of their hard work in designing the event center.
Washington Engineering & Architecture was founded in April 1989 by Terschluse and Unnerstall, who is a former Fair Board member and served as chairman in 1998.
In addition to the grand marshal, the committee selects an honorary group to participate in the parade.
This year’s honorary group is the St. Louis Green Berets, Special Forces Association Chapter XXVII. The members will ride in military vehicles.
Planning for the parade is well under way, said Hasting, who has a 20-member committee helping to organize the event.
The deadline for parade entries is June 22. Parade packets can be found at at washmofair.com.
“We have about 25 to 30 entries signed up, but we know many more are planned,” Hasting said. “We typically cut it off at 150 entries.”
The parade route is unchanged from last year; however the staging area will be different, she said.
“We’ll still be using the city pool parking lot, but the side streets are different,” Hasting said. “We’re trying to stay off as many residential streets as possible so we don’t inconvenience those people and to make it a little easier for the participants to access the staging area.”
Complete details will be announced at two upcoming meetings for parade participants, which also is new.
“We’re trying to do a better job of keeping our participants informed so we’re asking that one representative from every entry attend one of two meetings in July,” Hasting said. “Because of these meetings, we really want to avoid any late entries.”
Among the entries will be the Fair queen candidates who will ride in convertibles and the 2011 Fair Queen and her court. The Fair Board also will participate along with the two high school marching bands.
“It’s shaping up to be another great event,” said Hasting.
The parade theme is the same as the Fair — “Making Memories.”
The parade will begin at Circle Drive and High Street, near the city pool. It will travel south on High to Fifth Street; east on Fifth to Jefferson Street; north on Jefferson to Main Street; and west on Main, ending near the Main and Elm parking lot.
An after-parade party will again be held on the Main and Elm parking lot from 7 to 10:30 p.m. The Steve Leslie Band will perform.
Food and drinks will be available at that lot starting at 4 p.m.