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Southland cities plan Independence Day parades

LOS ANGELES — Parades marking the 239th anniversary of the nation’s independence will be held Saturday throughout Los Angeles County, with three having a connection to the Special Olympics World Games.

Santa Monica’s ninth annual Fourth of July parade will begin at 9:30 a.m. at Main Street and Pico Boulevard. Its theme is “Inspirational Heroes.”

Special Olympics global messenger Will Montgomery will be the grand marshal.

The Holmby Westwood Property Owners Association Fourth of July Parade will begin at 10 a.m. at Warner Avenue School. It will be led by Special Olympics World Games athletes Laura Cook, Luke Rose and Destiny Sanchez.

South Pasadena’s 33rd annual Festival of Balloons Fourth of July Parade will have the theme “South Pasadena Welcomes the Special Olympics World Games.” It will begin at 11 a.m. at Mission Street and Diamond Avenue.

The Special Olympics World Games will be held from July 25-Aug. 2. It will be the biggest sporting event to be held in the Los Angeles area since the 1984 Olympic Games.

The 67th annual Pacific Palisades Fourth of July Parade will begin at 2 p.m. on Sunset Boulevard, between Via de la Paz and Drummond Street. Its theme is “Palisades Parade: Pride! Passion! Patriotism!”

Businesswoman and longtime Pacific Palisades resident Joyce Brunelle, who submitted the winning entry, said it was inspired by the community’s residents and businessmen and women who volunteer their time on behalf of various projects.

KFI-AM (640) morning show host Bill Handel will be the grand marshal.

Westchester’s 16th annual Fourth of July Parade is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. and will be held along Loyola Boulevard from Westchester Park to Loyola Marymount University. The theme is “American Beach Party.”

The grand marshal will be Royce Clayton, who was raised in Westchester and played shortstop for 11 Major League Baseball teams from 1991 to 2007.

San Gabriel’s Fourth of July Parade will begin at 9:30 a.m. at Mission Elementary School, then head east on Broadway and conclude at Smith Park, where there will be a family picnic and barbecue.

The Valley Village Homeowners Association Fourth of July Parade will begin at Colfax Elementary School at 10 a.m. The parade is billed as a “red, white and blue celebration” where residents are encouraged to create their own floats and displays.

Rep. Brad Sherman, D-Sherman Oaks, will be among the participants.

The parade will conclude at Valley Village Park where the association will provide corn dogs, watermelon, cold drinks and cupcakes.

The 12th annual Great American Kids’ Bike Parade will begin at 10 a.m. at 1 Granada Ave. on the beach bike path in Long Beach.

Sierra Madre’s Fourth of July Parade will include children on decorated bicycles, classic cars and a marching band. The 1.3-mile two- hour parade will begin at 10 a.m. at the corner of Sierra Madre Boulevard and Sunnyside Avenue, and travel the length of Sierra Madre Boulevard to Sierra Vista Park.

Former Mayor Clem Bartolai and his wife Nina will be the grand marshal. Clem was a member of the committee that organized the first Fourth of July parade and celebration, was a member of the parks and recreation and planning commissions and a founding member of the Sierra Madre Community Foundation.

Nina has served on the Sierra Community Commission for more than six years. She and her husband were both involved with the Sierra Madre Rose Float Association, Sierra Madre Historical Society and Friends of the Library.

Rosemead’s parade will begin at 10 a.m. at Muscatel Avenue and Valley Boulevard and will include floats, bands, dignitaries and classic cars.

The Sunland-Tujunga Independence Day parade is set to begin at 10 a.m. at Foothill Boulevard and Mt. Gleason Avenue, head west along Foothill Boulevard and end at Sunland Park. Its theme is “Celebrating Our National Forest.” Smokey Bear will be the grand marshal.