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April 18, 2024

Vashti Day 2023

A Little Slice of Hometown Heaven


The residents of Vashti prepare and wait for this day all year long. Vashti Day is a yearly tradition in this small farming community that is always highly anticipated. This year, it was held on Saturday, June 24, with the parade beginning at 11 a.m. Residents and parade participants decorated their vehicles with red, white, and blue and they prepared food for a feast to feed the community. The Vashti Fire Department shined up their engines and cooked a spread of breakfast favorites. Patriotic colors were everywhere.

The parade participants gathered at Vashti Baptist Church to sign in and line up for the event. This year, the Grand Marshal of the parade was Vashti resident Shirley Daniels. She was decked out in her patriotic colors complete with a Grand Marshal sash. She rode in a 2016 BMW 435i convertible owned by Dale Chapman. She was driven by her great-grandson, Evan Chapman, and accompanied by two other great-grandchildren, Natalie and Jaden Chapman. It was important for Shirley to mention her great-grandchildren because she is obviously proud of these young adults.

The Sheriff’s Office led the parade, which began at the Baptist Church and proceeded down Vashti Road before looping around to head back to the church. Many parade watchers sat long enough to see the parade go in the opposite direction so they could see it twice. There were colorfully decorated wagons, lots of fire trucks, an assortment of antique cars, and lots of ATVs. The horses and horse drawn buggies were gorgeous with all of the riders waving to the crowd. Children happily scrambled to grab candy thrown from the parade participants.

Like every year, this was a day for a small community to gather together and invite guests. The Vashti residents offered hands of fellowship and sincere welcomes. Some even opened their carports after the parade to strangers for delicious grilled hot dogs and all of the trimmings. The festivities lasted all day long with residents sitting in lawn chairs and visiting with one another. Some shared a second meal and watched a beautiful fireworks display at dark.

Residents were concerned about weather this year because it had been an extremely wet week in Alexander County but the sun shone brightly on Vashti Day 2023.

A CLASSIC RIDE AT 70 — Above, Eric and Veronica Walker drove in the Vashti Day Parade on Saturday, June 24, in a 1953 Chevrolet Bel Air. The car is 70 years old this year.


GRAND MARSHAL — Mark Warren, the president of the Vashti Fire Department Board, presented Mrs. Shirley Daniels, the Vashti Day Parade Grand Marshal for 2023, with a plaque to commemorate the event.


PLACE OF HONOR — Grand Marshal Shirley Daniels rode in a 2016 BMW 435i Convertible owned by Dale Chapman. She was driven by her great- grandson, Evan Chapman, and accompanied by two other great-grandchildren, Natalie and Jaden Chapman.


VASHTI APPARATUS IN PARADE — Above, Vashti Fire Department’s Engine 3 rolls along during the 2023 parade.


BETHEL CHURCH — Above, Bethel Baptist Church members ride and wave.


COLD DRINKS — Hannah Nicholson and Carsyn Robinson set up their own patriotic lemonade stand for the Vashti Day Parade.


WIKE, 95, RIDES IN PARADE — Burpee Wike, age 95, was an honored guest of the Vashti Fire Department. He has been riding in the same truck in the parade for years.


Emmy and Callie Scott were decked out in red, white, and blue for the Vashti Parade.


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