Triton Community Summerfest parade a tribute to former DARE officer

BOURBON — Bourbon’s annual Triton Community Summerfest parade will have special significance this year. The celebration is dedicated to the late Gary Collins, former DARE officer, who passed away unexpectedly in February.
Kathryn Chapman Dreibelbis, parade organizer, along with her assistant Frances Berkey, decided the Summerfest parade would be a good opportunity to honor Collins’ memory. Dreibelbis asked Bourbon police chief Bill Martin to get involved. Martin invited law enforcement agencies in Marshall County and adjoining counties to take part in the parade. As a result, police cars from the Plymouth Police Department, the Marshall County Sheriff’s Department, Indiana State Police, and St. Joseph County Police will all drive in the parade Saturday, leading the festivities through the parade route. Collins’ wife and two daughters will serve as parade marshals.
Dreibelbis has also asked that vehicles and floats be decorated with a DARE theme along with signs honoring Collins.
“Probably it will mostly be the DARE colors,” said Dreibelbis, adding, “The more signs, the better. Anything they want to make to honor Gary. I just leave that up to their imagination.”
Most participants will just sign up on the day of the parade, according to Dreibelbis, so she has no way of knowing how many or what kind of entrants there will be. However, she added, the parade usually has a wide variety of floats and other entries.
There are five categories for parade entries: large and small floats, vehicles, horses, tractors, and miscellaneous (bikes, golf carts, walkers, etc.). A first and second place prize will be given in each category, as well as a grand marshal’s choice award.
Parade judging will take place at Triton High School at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, and the parade begins at 11 a.m.