Among the swarms of spectators excited to see the parade of firetrucks Saturday night, Fizzgig was probably the cutest.
With his ears perked up as the trucks blew their horns from nearly a street away, the 3-year-old Yorkshire terrier sat perched on Francesca DeStefano’s lap, searching for the action.
“He loves parades,” said DeStefano, of Medford.
Her husband, Paul, and 13-year-old son, Spencer, are drummers in the Long Island Ambassador Drum and Bugle Corps, so she travels the Island with her daughter, Cassie, 10, to see them perform. Fizzgig always comes along for the ride.
“He has probably been to six or eight parades lately,” she said, stroking his back as he danced around on her lap.
Fizzgig and his family were among those who lined the streets in Medford on Saturday to celebrate the Medford Fire Department’s 90th anniversary. More than 24 fire departments marched and drove their shiny, red trucks in recognition of the department’s long-standing service to the community.
“It has always been a tradition,” said Medford’s Chief Willie Wyche, who has been a firefighter with the department for 23 years and chief for the past two. “This is our way to show the community that we are here to protect them and it’s our way of giving back.”
Luana Dunn, of Medford, said she has been going to parades since she was a little girl. Her father was a volunteer firefighter and going to see him march was a family tradition.
“It was very big back then,” she said of parades. “There wasn’t a lot else to do for entertainment.”
Now, she is continuing the tradition with her family. On Saturday night, she sat cheering with her son, daughter and their three excited dogs as they watched the Medford parade.
“We love parades,” Dunn said. “This is our family tradition.”
Above: Fire officials at the judging station saluted each fire department as it marched by in Medford Fire Department's 90th anniversary parade. (Aug. 4, 2012)