No parade, no problem.
In absence of South Pasadena’s traditional 4th of July Festival of Balloons, the D.U.D.E.S will come to you.
It’s what this group of guys do, looking out for others.
An acronym for Dads Uniting in Education and Service, the D.U.D.E.S. mission is to support kids in the South Pasadena Unified School District, along with helping the faculty and PTA at each of the city’s five campuses.
“It isn’t safe for people to gather together for the parade this year, so we’re going to take the it to the them,” explained Ed Donnelly, the founder of D.U.D.E.S.
On Independence Day, the organization will have a slow rolling caravan that will visit homes of donors who want to help the Council PTA’s “Back 2 Class” campaign and, as Donnelly explains it, “perform a socially distanced song from inside our cars while we are wearing ‘I Love South Pas’ masks.”
Anyone in attendance at past Fourth of July parades in the city knows the excitement this group brings as members dance and sing, adding plenty of levity, prompting nothing but laughter and fun as they entertain massive crowds lined along Mission Street.
When word reached the D.U.D.E.S. that the Festival of Balloons was canceled as a result of the coronavirus outbreak they simply went the extra mile, using their creative instincts to come up with something special.
“You know the D.U.D.E.S. love to perform on the 4th,” reads a poster illustrating their latest effort in the community. “We have something crazy cooked up, and a bold fundraising goal for SPUSD (South Pasadena Unified School District schools).”
It concludes, saying: “WE NEED YOU!” featuring is a patriotic Uncle Sam pulling off is mask in these COVID-19 times, pointing, urgently saying: “Please help! It’s for the kids!”
Donations of $500 or more will bring the D.U.D.E.S. caravan to your house.
As the local schools face a major deficit due to COVID-19, the website promoting the event points out the district has “experienced unprecedented budget cuts and needs our community to step up and help with their huge deficit! This has to happen before the new school year.”
Classes are set to begin in the SPUSD on August 3 and as the new year approaches, Donnelly explained that the D.U.D.E.S. will have joined forces with “Back to Class South Pas,” an initiative that buys critically needed personal protective equipment (PPE) for students and teachers.
Here is a time lapse presentation Scot Drake’s South Pasadena artwork. Diamond Donors will also get a DUDES performance and 10 masks.
For the D.U.D.E.S. to make a visit to your place, visit them at SouthPasDudes.com/4th