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Sharon Owen Has Set Park City July Fourth Parade On Right Foot For More Than A Decade

KPCW Radio

The Fourth of July Parade is a mainstay for the Park City community and the thousands of visitors who come to watch it. Sharon Owen, on the other hand, is a mainstay for the parade. 

Sharon Owen has been at the top of Main Street for the beginning of Park City’s July Fourth parade for 14 years. Owen lives in Charleston, in the Heber Valley, and she started guiding the parade at the suggestion of a friend.

"One of my girlfriends used to be one of the ambassadors, and I used to work at Park City Mountain Resort," Owen said. "And she says, 'well, why don't you come over and do what you do at Park City Mountain Resort over here?' I said, 'well, sure, if you want me to,' and so I came over here and started pulling people out for the parade. They've just asked me each year, and I said, 'OK, fine.'"

Owen sets the pace for the parade floats. The main challenge, Owen says, is trying to keep enough space between each entry.

"You don't want them to get too close because you don't want them falling apart with carbon monoxide poisoning, and then you want everybody to see all the different floats and the banners and everything," Owen said. "So it's just, once it gets past me, you just never know what's going to happen."

Owen’s favorite part of the parade is when she gets to come down from the top of the hill. She’s ridden down on a float, a police car and a dump truck, which take her to the rest of the festivities.

"I do like coming down at the end of the day, after the parade is done, and just watching all the little children and the bands that are playing," Owen said. "They’re out there dancing and doing all this kind of stuff. They'll get out and, of course, kids nowadays have such crazy ways of dancing, and so I get really tuned to the little ones that are dancing outside."

As long as she keeps being asked to do it, Owen says she’ll stick to her post at the top of Main Street.

“It’s one of my easiest jobs, and I certainly do enjoy it.”

Emily Means hadn’t intended to be a journalist, but after two years of studying chemistry at the University of Utah, she found her fit in the school’s communication program. Diving headfirst into student media opportunities, Means worked as a host, producer and programming director for K-UTE Radio as well as a news writer and copy editor at The Daily Utah Chronicle.