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Utahns brave the heat to save spots for Days of '47 Parade

Posted at 10:08 PM, Jul 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-23 00:15:43-04

SALT LAKE CITY — Linda Owen has been saving the same spot on South Temple for 40 years.

“My family depends on me to come out and save the spot," she said. "We'll have a lot of people — last year we probably had about 100 people total, and the kids love it. It costs me nothing but time, and I have that, and they love it. It's worth it.”

Securing a shady spot under a tree, Owen said she’ll take the triple-digit heat over the downpour last year on the eve of the parade.

“We lost canopies and we were drenched," she recalled. "Every blanket we had was, so we had people bring us new dry things. So every year brings its own challenge, so what's a little heat versus being drenched with rain?”

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Lisa Biddulph's dad was the first one to set up Friday morning at 6 a.m.

“This is the spot we sit out every year," she said. "My mom used to come out and save this spot for the family and the grandkids, and she's passed on, so now my dad comes out and does it, so it's just our tradition.”

Safety is at top of mind for many parade-goers in light of a recent local tragedy: an 8-year-old girl was killed during Kaysville’s Fourth of July parade just two weeks ago. In addition, seven people died that same day after a gunman opened fire at a parade in Illinois.

“We have continued to look at what has happened nationally throughout our country," said Salt Lake City Police Department spokesman Brent Weisberg. "And we know that there are a lot of people who want to make sure that safety is the number one priority.”

In addition to having all hands on deck tomorrow morning, Salt Lake City Police officers are going to be doing patrols all Friday night, making sure people are safe and have everything they need.