Olympic Legend to Lead Hazelwood Harvestfest Parade on Sept. 8
The City of Hazelwood announced today that an Olympic athlete who hails from the St. Louis-area will be the Grand Marshal of the annual parade.
A hometown hero will be in Hazelwood to serve a special role in this year’s Hazelwood Harvestfest on Saturday, Sept. 8, the City of Hazelwood announced today.
"To help reinforce the “Experience America, Experience Missouri, Experience Hazelwood,” theme for this year’s Hazelwood Harvestfest ,” the city said in a press release. “Four-time U.S. Olympian Jackie Joyner-Kersee, who was voted by Sports Illustrated for Women magazine as the Greatest Female Athlete of the 20th Century, will be the Grand Marshal of the Harvestfest parade.”
The parade begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday, departing from Hazelwood City Hall. It will continue through the city to Howdershell Park. The route includes the streets of Coachlight, Town & Country, Holiday, Imperial and Village Square.
You’ll be able to see Jackie Joyner-Kersee anywhere along the parade route. She’ll be riding in one of several convertibles in the parade. Other convertibles will carry city officials and the 2012 Miss Hazelwood court.
“It is quite an honor for us to have the most decorated U.S. Olympic athlete from the St. Louis area lead our Harvestfest parade as the Grand Marshal,” said Hazelwood communications manager Tim Davidson.
Joyner-Kersee won three gold, one silver and two bronze Olympic medals in the women’s heptathlon and long jump events at four separate Olympic games, and she’s won more Olympic medals than any other woman—ever—in track and field events. In fact, Davidson told Patch, her world record of 7,291 points in the women’s heptathlon still stands today.
“It takes dedication, it takes a lot of patience, it takes a commitment, but with the understanding that you need the support of others to really help you,” Joyner-Kersee said n a recent interview with Erin Hill for Parade Magazine. “There are a lot of other people that really play a significant role in helping you become an Olympian.”
Joyner-Kersee was also asked about her legacy in paving the way for other female athletes.
“There are many women who came before me who didn’t really have the same opportunities that I have had. That’s why I always wanted to be a great ambassador – not only for today’s generation – but for the women who really didn’t have a voice, but who paved the way for me,” Joyner-Kersee said.
“Jackie’s success and the success of other U.S. Olympic athletes who won gold medals at the 2012 Olympic Games in London give all of us a reason to feel proud of being Americans,” Davidson said. “We’re also encouraging local residents to be proud of living in Hazelwood and discover everything it has to offer.”
Will you go to the parade on Saturday? What do you think about this year's very special Grand Marshal? Share your thoughts in the comments section, below.