College makes a BIG impression at Red Wing's River City Days parade
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UPDATE 8/6/2015: We are pleased to announce that Southeast Technical's parade entry was given the Chamber of Commerce Award. Thank you to the Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce and the Red Wing Rotary Club for this recognition!
Who doesn't love a parade? Red Wing's River City Days parade is always a big hit in the community as hundreds of area residents line the streets to watch marching bands, floats, clowns, antique cars, and fire trucks passing by.
The college made its first appearance in recent years in the River City Days Parade on August 2. It was a beautiful summer day with clear blue skies and temperatures well into the 80's.
Following a banner held aloft by two students, President Dr. Dorothy Duran rode atop a silver sports car. Despite the heat, she wore her black academic cap and gown, exemplifying the value of higher education.
"I thoroughly enjoyed participating in the Red Wing River City Days Parade and representing Southeast Technical," said Dr. Duran. "There is hope and opportunity in a college education and we are delighted to serve the Red Wing and neighboring communities."
Dr. Duran was followed by a team of college students, staff, and family members who publicized the theme that "Tuition is frozen for 2015-2016" by handing out flyers and freezer pops to the parade goers.
"We gave out 700 freezer pops and it wasn't enough," said Admissions Advisor Lacey Seefeldt. "We could have used twice as many - next year we'll bring more!"
But the "biggest" star of the show was yet to come. Truck Driving Instructor Tom Gierok drove an 18-wheeler through Red Wing's city streets, occasionally blowing the horn. "This horn is actually a Canadian Pacific Train horn - so it sounds like a freight train when you blow it!" Tom said. The crowd responded with applause and excitement.
The bright blue truck is the property of Southeast Technical graduate Brian Hager, who was kind enough to loan it to the college for the occasion. He was a student of Tom Gierok's in the mid-1990s who now owns his own trucking business based in Weaver, MN. He and Tom were up bright and early before the parade to wax and polish the truck.
The trailer that it pulls is the property of the college and is decked out with photos of several different college programs, and serves as a "rolling billboard" when it is used by students in the truck driving program.
All in all, Southeast Technical's participation was a great experience and we hope to be back next year. "It was a great team effort with the college's staff, faculty, students and volunteers showcasing the college," Dr. Duran concluded. "The Red Wing community displayed great enthusiasm and support for the college's presentation."
Thanks to Red Wing Rotary for sponsoring the parade!