Made in USA parade is gearing up

Published 11:22 pm Thursday, June 18, 2009

A new event is scheduled for Saturday, July 4, the nation’s birthday, to promote goods and services that are made in America.

Naomi Dewhurst is organizing the event and is still looking for people to participate, such as local vendors who make or sell products and services that are made here in the United States.

The parade will start at 10 a.m. that Saturday, at the intersection of North Beech Street and Goodyear Boulevard. The parade rout follows Goodyear down to Jack Read Park. At the park, Dewhurst is planning to have vendors set up tables to display and sell American-made items. She also plans to have a band play and a local person sing the National Anthem. The event will end at 2 p.m.

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Dewhurst hopes to find someone who will donate water so the participants of the parade will stay hydrated, she said.

So far, she has booked some local charity organizations such as the Pregnancy Support Center, Manna Ministries and the local SPCA. Recycling and purchasing American made products will be the focus of the event.

The idea to hold the event came to her while she was watching media coverage of faulty Chinese products and her observations of where products such as toys, clothes and technology products are made. She said she has noticed that most of the products Americans use everyday are today made in China or some other foreign country.

“Our safety is being compromised,” Dewhurst said.

With some major companies closing factories due to a declining economy, she said she would like to see some of those factories reopened to make everyday items here in America.

“We need to be so much less reliant on China than we are,” Dewhurst said. “Would you rather be unemployed or work in a toy or shoe factory?”

She has contacted some local businesses to see if they would like to participate. Among those she has contacted are Jerry’s Bead Gallery, Paint Your Own Studio and local people who make homemade clothes and outdoor furniture. Dewhurst said she would just like to see small steps made on the matter, even if it is just here in Picayune.

“We have so much power as a consumer and we can change things,” Dewhurst said.

Two local organizations are expected to make an appearance, Pearl River Patriots and 1776 Pearl River Community.

Anyone wishing to participate in the parade and event or would like to donate refreshments can contact Dewhurst at 601-798-6597.