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Town ushers in 50th anniversary year with Territorial Days

The ‘How it Began’ float, by Jean Hohman, was in the Chino Valley Territorial Days Parade on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. The parade consisted of nearly 30 entries, and kicked off the town’s 50th anniversary year. (Jason Wheeler/Prescott News Network)

The ‘How it Began’ float, by Jean Hohman, was in the Chino Valley Territorial Days Parade on Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. The parade consisted of nearly 30 entries, and kicked off the town’s 50th anniversary year. (Jason Wheeler/Prescott News Network)

The party began Saturday morning, Aug. 31, with nearly 30 entries in the 2019 Territorial Days Parade, celebrating Chino Valley as the first territorial capital of Arizona and kicking off the town’s 50th anniversary.

Mayor Darryl Croft, this year’s grand marshal, said he loved being able to get the ball rolling on the party — which is going to be a yearlong celebration.

“We’ll have all kinds of things going on,” Croft said. “Then we’ll have a big celebration next year at this time.”

The final entry of the parade, a truck with several members of the Chino Valley Town Council, bore a banner on its bumper, reminding everyone watching to save the date of Saturday, Sept. 5, 2020, when the 50th anniversary celebration reaches its climax.

Croft said he enjoyed being this year’s grand marshal. It was a lot of fun and gave him a chance to talk to and wave at people, Croft said.

Jami Lewis, town clerk, said afterward that the parade was kind of short but there were some cool entries.

It’s hard to believe the town is turning 50 next year, Lewis said. The yearlong celebration is going to be fun, but it also means there’s going to be a lot of work that needs to be done in the next year, she said.

Lee Rosenfeld also said it was a pretty cool parade. It was the first year he and his wife had come to see it after hearing about it and wanting to see what it was all about, he said.

Meanwhile, Jennifer Scott and her family come out to the parade every year because her kids are in it each year through something or another.

“It’s so good to do hometown things,” Scott said. “I love it, it’s so great. I love being here. It’s everyone’s hometown. It’s here, not Prescott.”

Over the next year, she said, she’s looking forward to the town doing more and more things with the community and with the kids. Her family will stay in Chino Valley forever if they keep opening things up, Scott said. In the more immediate future though, she said ,she was looking toward the 69th annual FFA Corn Dinner on Saturday night.

Announcing for the parade for the first time this year was Chino Valley Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lorette Brashear. Doing so, and getting the party started on the 50th anniversary year was fun, she said. The perks weren’t too bad either, she added, as she opened a piece of candy that had been thrown her way during the parade.

Watch dCourier.com and CVRNews.com for more on the upcoming events.

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