I arrived around 5:00 p.m. to take some pictures. I also wanted to see how parade enthusiasts creatively “reserved” their viewing spots.
In the past, families would show up a day (or so) early and place chairs out on the sidewalk to “reserve” their favorite spot. Since the chairs, duct tape, tarps etc. clogged up the sidewalks , viewing guidelines were created. FYI, I don’t think the guidelines are being followed all that closely and that’s O.K.
This year the parade started at 6:00 p.m., which is an hour earlier than in prior years. I like the 6:00p.m. start because it allows younger families to stay through the entire parade before the young kids crash/get cranky. ( Note: the parade lasts about an hour.) It also helps the downtown restaurants and merchants.