March of the little ones returns for 14th year |

March of the little ones returns for 14th year

Paul Conrad/The Aspen Times

Tilly Swanson, 3, and Kendall Clark, 3, had a serious mission on Thursday morning. The street kitty-corner from Boogie’s was crowded with 5-and-younger mayhem, little people running around screaming. Clark and Swanson, however, were busily throwing rocks into a storm drain, handfuls at a time.

They didn’t have a coherent explanation for the fun, but they seemed to be enjoying themselves, giggling and doing that little kid jump that’s halfway between a skip and a run, though it’s only one step.Yes, the kids parade struck again, for the 14th consecutive year. So the kids that were in the first parade are now graduating from high school this year, and it is now a tradition firmly rooted in Aspen.

“We probably have about 300 kids, parents and providers,” said Shirley Ritter, director of Kid’s First, the organizer of the parade and purchaser of hats (organized by color and design around which kids were in each group, or from which school). The parade went from Boogie’s over to Paepcke Park, where police waited with pizza and kids tunes blared from speakers. And the party just wouldn’t be complete without a bouncy castle. So a couple of hundred little kids ran around and screamed and went crazy to “Knick-Knack-Paddy-Wack.”

Saturday features another event for the little ones, a children’s fair at the Yellow Brick park, starting at 10 a.m. Big news: There will be a fire engine. Joel Stonington’s e-mail address is

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