Looking for something really unusual to see and do this weekend? How do 500+ horses (with attendant pooper scoopers trailing them), clop-clopping through the streets of Delaware sound? This Sunday marks the 25th running (clopping?) of the Delaware All-Horse Parade, and it’s a guaranteed hit with kids. Even the grownups will be a little slack-jawed with disbelief at the 90-minute cavalcade of horses, horses and more horses.
The parade is billed as the largest all-horse, non-motorized parade east of the Mississippi River (supposedly there’s a bigger one in Colorado somewhere but we’d like to see proof of that). It’s been happening for 25 years now and always occurs on the Sunday before the Friday opening of the Delaware County Fair.
A few tips on enjoyable AHP viewing: The parade starts at 3 p.m. at the Delaware County Fairgrounds on Pennsylvania Ave., then heads east on Pennsylvania, south on Sandusky Street, turns west onto Winter Street, then north on Liberty Street, west onto Lincoln Avenue, and then north up Euclid Avenue until it ends at the fairgrounds. A 5K running race (of humans) will precede the parade at 2:45 p.m. You can park your lawn chairs or picnic blankets on tree lawns along the route, but it’s always considered nice to ask the property owner behind the tree lawn if that’s OK. Any of the sidewalk space in town is open game, and many people save spots with lawn chairs early in the day (starting around 9 a.m.). But even if you arrive in town during that hour before the parade start, you should be able to find a viewing spot somewhere. Some blocks will host their own games of “horse poop bingo”: You’ll see where from the numbered grids spray-painted on the street. They collect money amongst themselves for a pot of prize money, and each person playing bingo selects a numbered square as their own. The square pooped on first wins the pot of money. You’ll never look at a bingo card the same way again. Be sure to cheer loudly for the pooper scoopers. They are the proud brothers of the Sigma Chi fraternity at Ohio Wesleyan University, and poop-scooping is one of their big community-service projects each year — and not of the court-ordered variety either!