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.
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.”
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.
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.