By JOSHUA WOLFSON
Hundreds of spectators defied the heat and turned out yesterday to watch the annual Murphys Homecoming Parade.
Cub Scout Pack 343 led the Main Street procession. Other entries included the 1st Calaveras Guards marching in 19th century uniforms, the Lah de Dahs of the Red Hat Society and a pack of patriotically dressed Jack Russell terriers.
Equestrian groups like the Calaveras Saddle Club, the Gold Dust Horses and the Magnificent Minis of the Mother Lode also participated in the parade, which ran between Algiers and Church streets.
"Being in a parade, it is like having that wonderful feeling of joy and freedom that you had as a child," said Volcano resident Sharon Kennedy, who rode down Main Street in a cart drawn by her miniature horse, Butterfly.
Vallecito Union School District Superintendent Michael Chimente served as the parade's grand marshal, riding in style in a red convertible.
The parade was part of the 55th annual Murphys Homecoming Celebration, which also featured a pancake breakfast, rubber duck races at Murphys Creek and festivities at Murphys Park.
The celebration was presented by the Murphys Community Club, whose members help care for the park.
The parade is a wonderful community event, said long-time resident Judy Ospital.
"Having the parade is part of being small-town Murphys," she said. "This is heaven. You don't have to worry about anything."