By: Heather Pingry | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: September 2007
Band members perform in a past PSO Christmas Parade of Lights event.
Every December, Tulsa welcomes the Christmas season with the Public Service Company of Oklahoma Christmas Parade of Lights. Organizers of the event wish to invite businesses and organizations to submit parade participant applications for the 2007 parade, which is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 8. Parade applications are available for floats, marching bands and specialty units. Opportunities also exist for giant helium balloon sponsorships, which are a great way to show community spirit and promote an organization.
The PSO Parade of Lights is one of the most highly-attended parades in the state of Oklahoma. It prides itself on being one of the most unique with its equestrian units, floats, dance squads, bands and giant helium balloons. The event truly is magical, as downtown Tulsa’s streets are lit up during the evening parade. In addition to over 100,000 viewers watching the parade on KTUL News Channel 8, the annual PSO Parade of Lights attracts approximately 18,000 on-street spectators each year.
Participating floats will be eligible to win several awards, including Most Creative, Best Use of Lights, the United Airlines Spirit Award, and Best of Show. Last year’s winners respectively include Garden Deva, Tulsa Public Schools, Tulsa Cerebral Palsy Association and Northeast Oklahoma Square Dance Association. Float judging will take place the Friday evening before the parade. Trophies will be presented immediately before the parade the following evening and winners will be featured on Channel 8 as they travel through the parade route. Winners are also announced in the Tulsa World.
New for the 2007 parade is the opportunity for participating bands to win a cash award. Judges will score each band at the television taping area of the parade route, and the cash award will be presented after the event. Organizers are currently searching for more local bands to participate and be eligible to win the cash prize.
Specialty unit applications are available for dance squads, drill teams, animal groups, clowns, horse drawn carriages, etc. Past highlights include Express Personnel’s Clydesdales, Reasor’s giant grocery cart, as well as the Shockwave Cloggers, previous Star Search winners.
A helium balloon sponsorship is an impressive way to generate exposure for a business or organization. The parades put on by both Marshall Field’s and Macy’s are well-known for their presentations of extraordinary helium balloons. Balloon sponsors generally want parade goers to experience an outstanding parade while being exposed to the sponsors’ advertising at the same time. Presenting a balloon is the perfect platform to create positive corporate identification and boost positive awareness about your organization throughout our community.
Sponsor benefits include a live local television broadcast and one rebroadcast, on-screen and on-street identification of the organization with the balloon, live mention of the organization during broadcast, presentation of the logo on the sponsor page of the Downtown Tulsa Unlimited website, as well as a listing in all media materials. The organizations’ volunteers will be trained in handling balloons the day of the parade.
Parade participant applications and balloon sponsorship agreements must be turned in by Friday, October 12. For more information, applications or balloon sponsorship, please visit www.tulsadowntown.org or call Downtown Tulsa Unlimited at (918) 583-2617. This year’s PSO parade is sure to be a good time had by all. Do not miss out on being a part of the fun!