Without a doubt, Saturday's running of the annual Miracle Mile Parade down Madison Avenue on the Southside of Indianapolis was the hottest of the five held since the tradition was launched in 2007. According to local weather forecasters, the day's high temperature reached 100 degrees -- a record for the day -- at 2:30 p.m., which is about when the parade was winding down (it had started at 1 p.m.).
I saw a lot of parade participants passing around or dipping into bottles of water or Gatorade, as well they should. Some of the parade participants were dressed in very warm clothing -- the Indiana Pacers and Fever mascots and the Haunted House representatives come to mind immediately. Members of the Southport and Perry Meridian marching bands went smart with T-shirts and shorts, while members of the Roncalli and Manual high school bands walked the route in T-shirts and long pants. Those are members of the Perry Meridian unit in the photo leading off this post; I went with a slower than usual shutter speed to try to capture the twirled rifles in "motion," but I might have gone a little slower than I should have with the shutter, because I wasn't quite able to catch the girls as sharply as I would have liked.
For the second year in a row, I chose a position near the end of the milelong route, a spot between Murray and Werges streets, about a block and a half south of my position last year, which was almost in front of Cardwell's Do-It Best Home Center. Near the end of the parade, right about 2:45 p.m., as the Red Hats and Purple Chaps entry passed by me, a Hats/Chaps woman riding a scooter keeled over and hit the pavement, apparently a victim of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Several people -- spectators, Hats/Chaps members and myself -- came to her aid with water and a portable hand fan. Within a few minutes, a Beech Grove Fire Department crew arrived and transported her to seek medical attention.
Here are some more pictures from my parade shoot Saturday.
Above: The U.S. and Indiana state flags.
Above: The Perry Meridian band was playing when it walked past where I was stationed. Thanks for that!
Above and below: Members of the Emmerich Manual High School Marching Band. Manual is located at Madison Avenue and Pleasant Run Parkway, which is about a quarter-mile north of where the parade starts each year (Madison and Southern avenues), so in that sense, Manual is the parade's "home" marching band.
Above: Members of the Murat Shrine Motorcycle Drill Team.
Above and below: The Roncalli High School Marching Band, including (below) some members gratefully accepting some liquid refreshment.
Above: Indiana Pacers' Lance Stephenson.
Above: A Red Hats parade participant, passing by moments before the events below unfolded.
Above and below: I'd already run out to help (I pulled the scooter off her body; the scooter was heavier than I had imagined), and when these many other folks also came out to help, I returned to the curb, thinking this woman would need some room to breathe. A fellow Red Hats member provided a portable hand fan to help cool the woman, and after a while, she seemed well enough to sit up and drink. The three members of the Johnson County Mini-Mystics paused to look in on the woman as they neared the point where she had fallen. Within a few minutes, a Beech Grove Fire Department ambulance crew arrived and transported her elsewhere for formal medical attention.