Fourth of July parade to begin with flyovers


By JoAnn Laird | Pagosa Springs Rotary Club

Photo courtesy Pagosa Springs Rotary Club
The San Juan Formation Squadron, with members of Chile Flight from Albuquerque, N.M., will open the Fourth of July Parade with a trio of formations.

Photo courtesy Pagosa Springs Rotary Club

The San Juan Formation Squadron, with members of Chile Flight from Albuquerque, N.M., will open the Fourth of July Parade with a trio of formations.

The Pagosa Springs Fourth of July Parade is gearing up to be one of Pagosa’s annual highlights. 

Can’t you just visualize all those groomed horses, strutting their stuff, proudly ridden by rodeo and Indian nation royalty? Braided manes, silver trimmed saddles — a colorful, proud tradition. Kids on decorated bikes, flag bearers, veterans, fire engines, theater groups, all loved by the crowd, locals and visitors alike — it’s the perfect start to celebrate the birth of our nation. 

Then there’s those daring young men in their flying machines who will once again be doing their formation flying over the start of the parade on Hot Springs Boulevard, just south of U.S. 160, at 10 a.m. sharp. Pagosa’s San Juan Formation Squadron, accompanied by members of the formation team of Chile Flight from Albuquerque, N.M., will make three passes, in three different formations, over the parade that only the best of the best can perform. 

These talented men and women are sure to amaze and could even bring a tear to your eye because of what aviation has meant to ensure freedom for our country. 

In the military and performance-flying teams, call signs are established, just like in the movie “Top Gun.” Tom Cruise was “Maverick.” The seven men and two women pilots in the San Juan Formation Squadron are Craig Taylor, “Goliath”; Mike Arbuthnot, “Towbar”; Skip Thomas, “Screech”; Dave Peart, “Renegade”; Tim Gallagher, “Plowman”; Travis Reese, “Renegade”; Elizabeth Reese, “Knobs”; Brittany Day, “Lefty”; and Jeff Glynn, “Phantom.” Now you have the inside story and won’t it be more fun when you see them around town? 

Because of the continuing McCabe Creek/6th Street construction, the parade route has a changed this year. The staging area will be on the vacant parcel to the south of Bank of the San Juans on Hot Springs Boulevard. This will also be the area for checking in at the registration desk, and the start and end of the parade. The parade will proceed north to the stop light, making a right onto Pagosa Street/U.S. 160, right onto 2nd Street, right onto Hermosa and making a left onto Hot Springs Boulevard back to the staging area. 

For those entering the parade, separate waivers will be required from all participants and are included with the application. These forms must be signed along with proof of insurance and a copy of your driver’s license for any entry that is a street-legal vehicle. Checking in at the registration desk is a must to receive your entry number and position in the parade. 

For those watching the parade, it is important to note, there will be no parking along the entire parade route. 

Applications, maps and general information are now available at Town Hall or at You can hand-deliver your application to Town Hall, or download, scan and email to The deadline is Friday, July 1, at noon and entries will not be accepted after this deadline. 

You can be a part of one of the hottest events of the year, in one of the coolest mountain towns you’ll ever see. Whether you’re a participant in the parade or a spectator, it’s bound to be a fun celebration.

Parking prohibitions announced for Fourth of July parade

Pagosa Springs Police Department

Due to public safety concerns and to reduce any conflict with pedestrian and vehicular traffic, all on-street parking is strictly prohibited along the designated parade route.

This order is in effect from July 3 at 9 p.m. until 12:30 p.m. on July 4, after the parade. Only parking in designated parking lots will be allowed within the parade route and vehicles must remain in place until the conclusion of the parade.

This order includes the 100 block of Pagosa Street (U.S. 160) at the 1st Street bridge, through the 400 block of Pagosa Street (U.S. 160) at Goodman’s Department Store), all of Hot Springs Boulevard and the Apache Street bridge.

Additionally, all parking will be prohibited on 1st Street and the 100 block of Lewis Street between the hours of 9 p.m. on July 3 until after the parade July 4. This is required for the designated detour.

Vehicles, including trailers found to be in violation of any of the above parking prohibitions, will be towed at the owner’s expense.

These parking prohibitions are required per the Colorado Department of Transportation parade permit, and to ensure a safe detour and route for this event.