LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The 59th annual Republic Bank Pegasus Parade steps off Thursday, May 1 in downtown Louisville, and for the 32nd consecutive year, WAVE 3 News is the parade's official broadcast home.
The parade, the Kentucky Derby Festival's oldest event, will march down Broadway from Campbell to 9th Street beginning at 5 p.m. WAVE 3 News will preview the parade during WAVE 3 News at 5. The parade will air live in its entirety beginning at 5:30 p.m. when the first entrant step into the "Broadcast Zone" in front of the WAVE 3 News studios at Broadway and Floyd Street. It will be available for viewing on TV, WAVE3.com and the free WAVE 3 News and Weather apps.
In honor of this year's parade theme, "Call of the Wild," Animal Planet host Jeff Corwin will serve as Theme Marshal. Lexington native Josh Hopkins, star of the television comedy Cougar Town, will serve as Grand Marshal.
Among the Kentucky Derby Festival's guests who are scheduled to appear in the Pegasus Parade are:
Floats from 15 sponsoring organizations will be featured in Thursday's parade: CenterStage at the Jewish Community Center, Centennial Festival of Riverboats -- Waterfront Development, City of St. Matthews, Grand Lodge of Kentucky, Hwang's Martial Arts, Kentuckiana Pride Festival, Kosair Charities/Kosair Shriners, Louisville Metro Parks & Recreation, Norton Healthcare, ResCare/Signature HealthCARE, Second Chance @ Life, S.O.C.K.S. Inc., The Fillies, Inc., The Louisville Zoo, and "Produce" with Angels in Disguise.
The parade will also feature 16 equestrian units, one camel, six inflatables, 11 marching bands, two push floats and 28 specialty units.
Inflatable characters scheduled to participate include Peggy Bank (Republic Bank), Horseshoe (Horseshoe Southern Indiana), Louie the Lightning Bug (LG&E), Otto the Auto (AAA East Central), "Animal" from The Muppet Show (ZirMed, Inc.) and Gator (Stage One Family Theatre).
Tickets for bleacher seats along the Pegasus Parade route are still available. They can be purchased from 1 to 5 p.m. Thursday at will call. Patrons who have already purchased tickets may pick them up at the will call office located in the ArtSpace lobby at 323 W. Broadway. The entrance to ArtSpace is located next to the Brown Theatre on Broadway between 3rd and 4th Streets.
The Pegasus Parade, the Kentucky Derby Festival's founding event, is one of nearly 70 events produced by the Kentucky Derby Festival (KDF). The first parade was organized by just a handful of volunteers in 1956 on a budget of $640. It provides an estimated impact of $22 million to the area's economy, according to KDF.
WAVE 3 News has broadcast more than half of KDF's Pegasus Parades over the years, beginning in 1982. This year's parade will be hosted by WAVE 3 News Anchor Dawne Gee and Chief Meteorologist Kevin Harned with the WAVE 3 News Storm Tracking Team.
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