Watch this Lawnmower Brigade go the extra yard for Wilmore’s Fourth of July Parade

·2 min read

Two by two, almost 20 men lined up recently on a hot summer evening in the middle of of Jessamine County street — each with a lawnmower held tight.

“About four steps in between front to back, guys, and four steps side to side,” Glen Flanigan, Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade co-chair, told the assembled crew, which ranged in age from 13 to mid-70s.

For decades, the brigade, begun by Dr. Lynn Cooper, a retired band director at Asbury University, has entertained and delighted spectators during the annual Wilmore Fourth of July parade.

Thursday evening marked the first of two practices before Monday’s parade. For about an hour, the men pushed their lawnmowers down residential streets, pausing occasionally to wave cars through, while marching music boomed from a minivan in front as Flanigan called for choreographed movements.

Along the parade — and practice — route, the brigade performs precision maneuvers with their lawnmowers.

“We have maneuvers such as wheelies, where the mowers are spun in a circle,” Flanigan explained. “We have diamonds, where the mowers go out and across. We do a mower exchange. We do a salute to the crowd, where we tip our hats and salute the audience.”

Members of the Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade begin a practice session in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Members of the Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade begin a practice session in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
The Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade rehearses precision maneuvers ahead of Monday’s Fourth of July parade in Wilmore, Ky.
The Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade rehearses precision maneuvers ahead of Monday’s Fourth of July parade in Wilmore, Ky.
The Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade rehearses precision maneuvers ahead of Monday’s Fourth of July parade in Wilmore, Ky.
The Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade rehearses precision maneuvers ahead of Monday’s Fourth of July parade in Wilmore, Ky.

Each year parade spectators enjoy the group’s performance, Flanigan said.

“This is really a nice thing and a nice part of it,” he said, “and I think one of the reasons the guys keep coming out every year.”

This year’s parade is scheduled for 10 a.m. Monday, July 4. The parade will begin at Wilmore Elementary School, travel downtown up East Main Street and turn right on Lexington Avenue.

Members of this year’s Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade range in age from 13 to mid-70s. The group practiced its maneuvers on Thursday, June 30, 2022, in Wilmore, Ky.
Members of this year’s Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade range in age from 13 to mid-70s. The group practiced its maneuvers on Thursday, June 30, 2022, in Wilmore, Ky.
Members of this year’s Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade range in age from 13 to mid-70s. The group practiced its maneuvers on Thursday, June 30, 2022, in Wilmore, Ky.
Members of this year’s Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade range in age from 13 to mid-70s. The group practiced its maneuvers on Thursday, June 30, 2022, in Wilmore, Ky.

Flanigan said the lawnmower brigade is a part of the Jessamine County town’s small town community.

“And just an atmosphere where we like to have fun,” he added. “It’s a day of celebration and fun.”

Following the parade, a festival with food, arts and crafts, games and inflatables will take place at the Wilmore Municipal Center at 210 S. Lexington Ave. in Wilmore.

Glen Flanigan, left, Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade co-director, leads the group’s members in a practice session in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Glen Flanigan, left, Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade co-director, leads the group’s members in a practice session in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Members of the Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade practice their precision maneuvers in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Members of the Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade practice their precision maneuvers in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Members of the Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade practice their precision maneuvers in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Members of the Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade practice their precision maneuvers in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Glen Flanigan, right, Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade co-director, leads the group’s members in a practice session in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Glen Flanigan, right, Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade co-director, leads the group’s members in a practice session in Wilmore, Ky., on Thursday, June 30, 2022.
Members of this year’s Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade range in age from 13 to mid-70s. The group practiced its maneuvers on Thursday, June 30, 2022, in Wilmore, Ky.
Members of this year’s Wilmore Lawnmower Brigade range in age from 13 to mid-70s. The group practiced its maneuvers on Thursday, June 30, 2022, in Wilmore, Ky.
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