Carmelfest 2016: Parade participants banned from handing out candy

By Mark Ambrogi

The CarmelFest parade committee announced in early June that it had implemented a no candy policy for parade floats and entries.

The decision to change the tradition was not made lightly, and officials examined other parades, CarmelFest chairman Gary Sexton said. The idea had been discussed for several years. This year the 16-person parade committee decided it could no longer table the decision, and those in attendance voted unanimously to no longer hand out candy at the event.

A few years ago, officials banned the practice of throwing candy from parade vehicles. In recent years, floats and other parade participants have had roller blade riders or walkers pass out candy, but often the candy would drop in the street and children would run for it.

Sexton said there are quick-moving vehicles, such as motorcycles, in the parade.

“We want to make sure we are doing the absolute right thing for public safety,” Sexton said. “Float drivers have a challenging time enough watching the parade ahead of them. With public safety and insurance requirements with a festival of our size, we just have to make the change.”

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