Like a good neighbor, Lansing is there

2013-05-04T22:00:00Z 2013-05-05T23:53:06Z Like a good neighbor, Lansing is therePaul Czapkowicz Times Correspondent
May 04, 2013 10:00 pm  • 

LANSING | Parade entries lined up down Wentworth Avenue from Ridge Road to 178th Street on Saturday afternoon for the 46th annual Good Neighbor Day Parade.

Churches and school bands were heavily prevalent in the annual event put on by the Lansing Area Chamber of Commerce to showcase local businesses and foster community spirit.

The parade traveled west on Ridge Road to Torrence Avenue, where it then went north to 179th Street before heading into Lan-Oak Park.

Some participants truly embraced this year's theme of Lansing's Three-Hour Tour by working a "Gilligan's Island" angle into their decor.

Jeff Van Kley, with Lansing Auto, of Lynwood, dressed as the Skipper from the 1960s television show as he went along the parade route. His place of business even put a boat it called the S.S. Minnow onto a truck to really go with the Gilligan theme.

"I grew up in Lansing, and it's just always something I've gone to, so it's just kind of normal to me," Van Kley said.

Another regular attendee is Rachel Hersom, who had water bottle duty as she walked with the Thornton Fractional South High School marching band.

She described the parade as being traditional, fun and long.

"It's a community thing," Hersom said. "Everyone comes out, watches it. It's kind of cool. It's fun to be part of it."

A first-time parade participant was the Visible Music College, which in August will open a new branch on Lake Street in Lansing.

The college that offers bachelor's degrees in music, music production and music business had a band of students performing on a truck decorated with many green and black balloons.

Geordy Wells, vice president of advancement for the college, said it was special to be part of this longtime Lansing tradition that celebrates community.

"I do believe that we don't have enough left of that in our country today," Wells said.

Lisa Burleson watched the parade with her husband and two children near the corner of Wentworth and Ridge Road.

Although she lives in Crown Point now, Burleson still comes back to her former hometown to watch the parade each year.

"It's a great way to visit with people," Burleson said. "It's great fellowship. And the kids just love coming back to it every year."

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3141 Ridge Road Lansing, IL 60438

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2710 170th Street Lansing, IL 60438

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