California Dreams is the theme of the 2019 Colony Days Parade, set for Saturday, October 5 at 10 a.m. The parade will be followed by a historical re-enactment of Tent City in early Atascadero, wiener dog races and various vendors. The annual fundraiser concert, Tent City After Dark, will kick off the weekend on Friday, October 4.

The theme was chosen at the annual dinner of the Colony Days Committee in January. That was the same night that Nic Mattson was named as Colony Days Chair for the 2019 and 2020 events.

“’California Dreams’ is really exciting for a theme, as it touches on so many aspects of life here in Atascadero,” Mattson said.

“From E.G. and Mabel Lewis’ dream of utopia, to the classic Mamas and Papas song about California. Beaches, mountains, lakes, rivers, hiking, and great events… everything starts with a dream … catching your first wave to reaching the top of the great hiking peaks we have here in the area. Not to mention the bright colors that ‘California Dreams’ inspires. I’m excited to see what people do with this theme for the parade.”

Parade entries will be accepted over the summer. More information, the entry form and a place to sign up for various email lists can be found at ColonyDays.org.

While the annual celebration is still many months away, volunteers are busy planning the coming event and there are still a number of jobs available.

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“We have some great opportunities,” Mattson said. “From joining the parade to selling food or other goods as a vendor. Or if someone is really excited, we have volunteer positions available on the board that can really help make the parade great. Volunteer opportunities can be a board commitment or just offering to help during the week of the event as we set up or manage the event.”

In addition, there are a variety of committees that plan different aspects of the event that need new members to continue to make the event a success.

“My favorite part is seeing smiles and a sense of wonder on the faces of Colony Days attendees,” Mattson said. “It takes a lot of work organizing, and a lot of work by dozens of entries to get their floats made and groups organized, so it is great to see that leave an impression on people. Colony Days is an open event where the imagination is allowed to run wild. If something is missing, it is because someone didn’t bring it.”

The 2017-18 Committee Chair Karen McNamara said that it’s pretty amazing that the committee can put on the event every year.

“It’s very well attended and very well loved,” she said, adding that there are many free things for people to enjoy during and after the parade.

Parade entry forms, vendor forms, theme info, sponsorship forms, and volunteer information will be available throughout the year online at colonydays.org. Sign up for email notifications.

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