Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Des Moines’ annual, physical Waterland Parade – usually held on the third Saturday in July – was canceled…but for the first time in 60 years a ‘Virtual’ one was created!

This new, safe parade – brought to you by Destination Des Moines and the Rotary Club of Des Moines & Normandy Park – features video entries from community members, local dignitaries, organizations, businesses, musicians and more.

Residents were invited to send videos or photos to volunteer organizers, who then got Larry Dominico to edit the entries together into a 2-hour virtual video extravaganza that you can watch safely right here:

Also, a caravan from Seafair made a surprise appearance in Des Moines on Saturday, with a collection of vehicles that included a hydroplane, clowns and the ever-popular Seafair Pirates!

Here’s a video that was streamed live from the Moby Duck on Facebook by the Pirates:

…and here’s a slow-mo clip showing part of that “mini” parade passing through town, courtesy Blake Messer of Newfangled Commerce:

Here’s more from our friends at Destination Des Moines:

“Thank you to all of our sponsors and volunteers. Waterland Festival simply would not be possible without your support. Unfortunately, this year will be a new chapter in the 60 year Waterland Festival tradition. In light of the current COVID-19 health crisis, our organization and city officials decided to cancel Waterland Festival events including 4th of July Fireworks, community BBQ, Waterland Festival weekend, Wheels & Keels car show.

​”Instead,  we have joined with the Rotary Club of Des Moines/Normandy Park to host four virtual community events, the Running of the Flags Fun Run/Walk/Bike on July 4-5, Artwalk and Scavenger Hunt on July 11-12, Waterland Grand Parade Virtual Edition on July 18) and Poverty Bay Wine Festival (Virtual Facebook Event on July 25, during the Waterland Festival month of July.”

For more info, visit https://www.destinationdesmoines.org.