2018 Grand Marshal

The Findlay Market Association is the proud sponsor of the 99th Opening Day Parade, and with the cooperation of the Cincinnati Reds, is proud to announce the Grand Marshal for this year's parade (start time of noon, from the market).

2018 Findlay Market Parade Grand Marshal - Danny Graves & Sam LeCure

Danny Graves - The Reds' all-time career leader in career saves with 182, Graves was acquired by the Reds in a trade with Cleveland on July 31, 1997. Graves became the Reds' primary closer in the 96-win season of 1999, leading the team in saves with 27, the first of four consecutive seasons in which Graves was the club's saves leader. After spending the 2003 season in the starting rotation, Graves set a franchise record by pacing the team in saves a fifth time when he returned to the closer's role in 2004. He ranked in the top 10 in the National League in saves four times during his Reds career. A National League All-Star in 2000 and again in 2004, Graves was the winner of the Ernie Lombardi Award as the Reds' Most Valuable Player and the Johnny Vander Meer Award as the Reds' Outstanding Pitcher in 2000. In 2002, Graves was the recipient of the prestigious Lou Gehrig Memorial Award. After concluding his Reds career, Graves pitched for the Mets in 2005 and returned to the Indians for his final Major League season in 2006.

Sam LeCure - Originally selected out of high school in the 45th round of the First-Year Player Draft by the Phillies in 2002, the Reds drafted LeCure in the fourth round of the 2005 Draft. He made his Major League debut as a 26-year-old starter in 2010, and earned the win in the Reds' 15-6 victory over the Astros. LeCure split time as a starter and a reliever during the Reds' National League Central Division title-winning season and made four starts in April 2011 before exclusively becoming a reliever. His experience as a starter and ability to pitch multiple innings made him a valuable asset as a longman early in his Reds career. He soon became such a weapon that he was used situationally and late in games. LeCure was a key contributor out of the bullpen during the Reds' 96-win, 2012 Central Division championship season. He put together his best season in another playoff-qualifying season for Cincinnati in 2013, pitching in 63 games with a 2.66 ERA, both career bests. He pitched another full season in 2014 and saw his Reds career wrap up with 19 appearances in 2015. In his six years as a Major Leaguer, all with Cincinnati, LeCure pitched in 250 games with a 3.51 ERA.

Two current players will be announced the week before the parde.  Last year we had: Rookie Davis & Robert Stephenson

There are a few more we are waiting on final confirmation on, will post when we get that confirmation.

Otis WilliamsOtis Williams of Otis Williams and The Charms will appear with the King Studios entry (Position #20). Otis Williams was born and raised in Cincinnati. He attended Withrow High School and graduated in 1954. His band "The Charms" were formed at Withrow High, who went on to great heights, scoring 2 gold records and 9 hits, including "Hearts Made of Stone” and "Ivory Tower". Also along with their King label mates such as Hank Ballard, Little Willie John, the Mascots (later to become the famed O'Jays), the group worked with such artist as Count Basie, Diana Washington, Dizzie Gillespie, Johnny Mathis, Jackie Wilson, The Four Tops, Frankie Avalon, Frankie Valli and many more. Otis was a part of the first all-black Revue to work Carnegie Hall in NY w/the Allen Freed Revue. He wrote Pat Boone’s first popular hit record "Two Hearts Two Kisses", also recorded by Frank Sinatra and Dorris Day.

Otis still performs and does seminars both locally and abroad. Justin Jeffre, of 98 Degrees, is a staunch advocate of the importance of Otis & The Charms and King Records in music history. Otis and his son, Kent, also are working diligently (along with the City of Cincinnati and the University of Xavier) to preserve the rich history of King and educate the public throughout, specifically our youth! At present there is a major movement to save the original King Records bldg., which is at the top of the list on saving its rich heritage for us all.

See Otis Williams on youtube Hearts Made Of Stone and Ivory Tower

Philip Paul with drum sticksPhilip Paul will appear with the King Studios entry (Position #20). Drummer Philip Paul, the 2009 recipient of the Ohio Heritage Fellowship for Performing Arts, played on some of the greatest, most important records ever made including "Good Rockin' Tonight" by Wynonie Harris, "Fever" by Little Willie John, "Hideaway" by Freddie King and "The Twist" by Hank Ballard. All those records were recorded for the legendary Cincinnati record company, King Records, where Paul served as the in-house drummer from 1952 through 1964.  In addition to his extensive session work with King, Paul worked for years as one-third of the Roy Meriwether Trio, recording a pair of albums with Meriwether on Columbia. He also toured with jazz artists including Jimmy Smith, Nat Adderly and Herbie Mann and toured the U.S. and Canada with George Weins Newport Jazz All-Stars.  Philip Paul made his first album as a leader in 2003, the aptly named It's About Time. In 2002, he received a Lifetime CAMMY Award from the Cincinnati Enquirer for his contributions to the music and culture of Cincinnati.

See Philip Paul on youtube Philip Paul on the Twist

Anthony MunozAnthony Munoz will appear with the Anthony Munoz Foundation entry (Position #24). First-round draft pick by Cincinnati Bengals and third overall pick in 1980, Anthony played 11 years in the NFL and was enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1998.  He was named NFL’s Man of the Year in 1991, and his career as an All-Pro lineman earned him membership on the NFL’s 75th Anniversary All-Time Team in 1994.  In 2010, he was ranked No. 12 on the NFL Network's Top 100 players list and was the highest-ranked offensive lineman.  In 2002, Anthony created the non-profit Anthony Muñoz Foundation, which works with Greater Cincinnati youth impacting them mentally, physically and spiritually.  Since its inception, the Foundation has raised over $11 million for youth programs. In 2017, in celebration of its 50th anniversary, Anthony was recognized by the Cincinnati Bengals as the No. 1 Bengal as voted on by fans and media.

Anthony and his wife Dede have two children, Michael (wife, Emily) and Michelle (husband, Luke Trenz), and 9 grandchildren, all living in the Cincinnati area.  He is a true family man, who also stays active in the community, sharing his persistent message to overcome adversity and give back.  The former Cincinnati Bengals star has logged two decades of high-profile charitable work and youth advocacy since retiring from the game in 1992.  A true hometown hero, Anthony continues to give his time and dedication to serving the youth of Greater Cincinnati.  For more information, visit the Anthony Munoz Foundation's website: www.munozfoundation.org.


Bucky & Lucy

Bucky & Lucy will appear with Miami Valley Gaming entry (Position #57).
Lucy – Buckeye Inspector - Just add a 'k' to 'Lucy' and you have all you need to know about her driving force. As the newest recruit, and the third official member of the Lucky Buckeye Co., 'Lucky' is in her DNA. She's a graduate of the prestigious Ohio State Buckeye finishing school and has won multiple awards in the categories of Buckeye Handling, Buckeye Whispering and, recently, Most Meticulously Inspected Buckeye. When she's not inspecting Buckeyes, Lucy enjoys macramé and big game hunting.
Bucky – Buckeye Farmer - Though not technically a full-time Lucky Buckeye Co. employee, Bucky is an essential cog in the growing luck industry and a key supplier in the Buckeye supply chain. His Buckeye farming pedigree traces it's lineage back to the very first Buckeye farmers in Ohio – who, at the time, harvested buckeyes simply to throw at each other. When he's not farming or delivering Buckeyes, Bucky still very much enjoys throwing Buckeyes into open fields.

See them on youtube: Bucky the Farmer & Giddy Up -- Also, April 2 is Bucky's birthday; let's make it one to remember.

Clydesdale LogoThe world-famous Budweiser Clydesdales, will appear with the Anheuser-Busch entry (Position #65).  The world-famous Budweiser Clydesdales, the symbol of quality and tradition for Anheuser-Busch since 1933. The eight-horse hitch will be harnessed and hitched to the famous red beer wagon at Findlay Market. The "Gentle Giants", as they are often referred to, will participate in the Findlay Market Parade.

Canadians of Scottish descent brought the first Clydesdales to America in the mid-1800's. Today, the giant draft horses are used primarily for breeding and show. Horses chosen for the Budweiser Clydesdale hitch must be at least three years of age, stand approximately 18 hands – or six feet – at the shoulder, weigh an average of 2,000 pounds, must be bay in color, have four white legs, and a blaze of white on the face and black mane and tail. A gentle temperament is very important as hitch horses meet millions of people each year. A single Clydesdale hitch horse will consume as much as 20-25 quarts of feed, 40-50 pounds of hay and 30 gallons of water per day.  Each hitch travels with a Dalmatian. In the early days of brewing, Dalmatians were bred and trained to protect the horses and guard the wagon when the driver went inside to make deliveries.

The Budweiser Clydesdales can be viewed at the Anheuser-Busch breweries in St. Louis, Mo.; Merrimack, N.H.; and Ft. Collins, Colo. They also may be viewed at Grant's Farm in St. Louis and at Warm Springs Ranch, the 300-plus acre Clydesdale breeding farm located near Boonville, Mo.

Ron Oester

Ron Oester will appear with Belterra Park entry (Position #69). A Cincinnati native and 1974 graduate of Withrow High School, second baseman Ron Oester played his 17-year professional baseball career in the Cincinnati Reds organization, including 13 years at the Major League level. Selected by the Reds in the ninth round of the 1974 amateur draft, Oester made his Major League debut in 1978 and began making regular appearances in the Reds lineup in 1980 when he appeared in 100 games and finished fourth in voting for the National League Rookie of the Year Award. In 1981, Oester enjoyed the first of six consecutive seasons as the Reds starting second baseman, a streak that was interrupted by a major knee injury he suffered in July of 1987. He won Major League Baseball's Hutch Award in 1988 after his successful return to the Reds everyday lineup. In his final season in 1990, Oester was a key player off the bench during the Reds World Championship season and scored the winning run in the Reds pennant-clinching game over the Pirates in Game 6 of the 1990 NLCS. After his playing career, Oester spent six seasons with the Reds as a Major League coach. He remains a Cincinnati resident.

Jason Kiley (pictured), Taxi Phil and Stephen Casper will appear with Cincinnati Beard Barons entry (Position #148). Jason Kiley represents Remington Beard Boss, won Best Freestyle Beard and then named Best in Show at the World Championships, making it the Best Beard in the World! Taxi Phil placed 3rd in freestyle moustache and Stephen Casper placed 3rd in natural Sideburns as General Burnside at the World Championships. The 2017 WBMC was held in Austin, Texas in September. See Jason on Youtube and also see Results of competition.

The Cincinnati Beard Barons will host the Big Whisker Revival at Southgate House on Oct 13th to raise money for the One Way Farm in Fairfield. In the last 2 years they raised $15,000. The One Way Farm Children's Home is a non-profit organization located in Fairfield, Ohio, caring for the abused, abandoned, neglected, troubled youth, and children with disabilities and developmental disabilities. Twice a year, on Memorial Day and Veterans Day, the Beard Barons place flags at Spring Grove Cemetery to recognize those who served their country.

Reds Rally PackWatch for The Scott's Reds Rally Pack and The Reds Mascots: Gapper, Rosie Red, Mr. Red and Mr. Redlegs! Rosie Red. The Rally pack with the Mascots.   The Scott's Reds Rally Pack has participated in the Opening Day Parade for the last 14 years.  At Great American Ball Park they are responsible for spreading joy, and free tee shirts, to fans throughout the season.