We Know Montana

May 5, 2013 12:54 PM by Lindsey Gordon - MTN News

Vigilante Day Parade brings Helena's past to life

HELENA - Schools closed a little early and families took to the streets on Friday afternoon, and downtown Helena was the place to be for the annual Vigilante Day Parade, a Helena tradition since the 1920s.

Year after year, the creative floats capture Montana's vibrant history, from buffalo jumps to smoke jumpers, and from fire crews to scenes straight out of the old West, and this year was no different.

The parade started in 1924 in order to stop a rivalry between junior and senior classes at Helena High School. Now more than 85 years later, the parade has become one of Helena's biggest community events.

One of this year's participants was Helena High School senior Noah Rivers, who said, "We're doing the Montana Club, which it started in 1885 and it was an all-gentleman's club and they basically just got the money together themselves when Helena had the most millionaires per capita."

High school students got to miss school on Thursday to make their floats, something they look forward to all year.

"Get the kids doing something else, out of routine from school and just do historic Helena and show it by doing a parade and a float," said Austin Young, a Helena High School senior.

Young's team float depicted the first Helena Fire Department.

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