HELENA — Helena-area high school students were putting the finishing touches on their floats Thursday for the annual Vigilante Day Parade which honors and celebrates Montana History. Some participants have been working on their floats for the last few weeks, while others were getting them all put together Thursday.
Due to COVID, Last year a “Reverse Parade” was held in which cars drove past a still parade line. And the year before that the parade was flat-out canceled.
For many high schoolers like Sarah Logan and her friend group of sophomores and juniors, this year’s parade will be their first normal parade. As one of their groups’ favorite chosen pastimes, they’ve decided to go bowling for their Imperial Lanes float.
“It's so fun. I'm so happy that we got to participate this year. I was super sad when we didn't get to do it last year, but it's been really fun,” says Logan.
Imperial Lanes was located at 607 Roberts, between 11th Avenue and Prospect Avenue. The bowling alley was torn down in 1984, to make way for the construction of the J. C. Penney Co. store at the west end of Capital Hill Mall. You can find out more about Imperial Lanes, including historical pictures, on helenahistory.org.
This will be the second and last real parade for Helena area seniors. Unbeknownst to MTN, some students decided to make a KTVH float this year. Having gotten a taste of a full-on parade back in 2019, the seniors say they were happy to be able to participate one last time before graduating.
KTVH will be live streaming the parade on Facebook beginning at 12:00 p.m. on Friday, May 6.