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home : camp verde bugle : accountability February 5, 2016

By Richard Haddad, Prescott Valley, AZ
This blog boldly addresses the need for men to accept, once again, accountability for their actions and to deliberately step forward to be better men — accepting and valuing their role as fathers, husbands and providers. I believe many of the world’s problems today can be traced back to men who did not fulfill their divine responsibilities, impacting first the family, and then the world.
Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Tips on building the perfect float

 Briana Lonas

The Guidance Helicopter/Native Air float won the Chamber’s Choice award in last year’s Prescott Valley’s annual Festival of Lights parade.
Tribune file photo

Prescott City Councilman Chris Kuknyo presented a Christmas float workshop at the Prescott Valley Public Library last week; the holiday season is right around the corner bringing many special events and parades.

The Prescott Valley Festival of Lights and Parade begins at 4:45 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 5, at the Civic Center with the parade starting at 6 p.m, 7501 E. Civic Circle.

The Prescott 19th annual Holiday Light Parade begins at 6 p.m. on Nov. 29, starting at Cortez and Carleton streets and ending at the Prescott Mile High Middle School.

Kuknyo said he's been entering and decorating his Patriot Disposal business truck in local parades for 14 years.

"Don't be afraid to promote yourself," Kuknyo said as he explained the connection your business, or message, can make to a crowd.

Another tip he offered is not to be afraid to go as simple or as elaborate as you want with your parade float.

Kuknyo recommends using net lighting for even, full coverage. Also, rope lights are ideal for outlining decorative elements for the float.

The following tips also prove handy when entering a parade event:

• Use zip ties

• Get to the route early to decorate

• Limit three strings per plug

• Use three-way extension cords

• Have power strips

• Write a good script for the entry announcer and make it no more than 20 seconds

Begin decorating the float at the top so that everything stays balanced, he said.

In addition:

• Use tinsel and garland to help make your lights stand out

• Light up your walkers with battery-powered lights

• Use ornaments

• Light as much of the surface area as you can

• Use duct tape to wrap connections that may come loose

• Use vinyl banners, paper tears too easily

Kuknyo also recommends the human touch.

"Put people on your float," he said. Also, it's important to be happy; be sure to smile and wave.

"Act like you recognize someone in the crowd," he said adding that it also makes a nice impression when the float participants wear festive hats or even antlers," he said.

More great tips:

• Use music, a home stereo works great

• Slow down and don't rush. Let your walker set the pace. Remember, the goal is not to get to the end, the goal is to have a good time

• Keep a 50-yard distance from float in front of you

Keep the following tools on hand:

• Nippers

• Duct tape

• Bailing wire

• Extra fuses, a flashlight and extension cords

• A plastic bin to store the parade tools

Kuknyo also recommends that if you are using a generator, be sure to fill it up with gas prior to arriving at the event and ensure there is enough air around it to allow the generator to breathe.

Safety tips:

• Avoid allowing kids to run around the float. Keep children on the float, under the supervision of an adult

• Wear warm clothing to include gloves and a hat

• Have your walker wave a flashlight in the driver's eyes if something or someone gets in the way - the primary walker acts as the eyes for the driver

• Don't obstruct the driver's vision

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