News Column

Parade's grand marshal reflects its theme

December 2, 2013


Dec. 02--It's no wonder that the grand marshal of this year's Christmas Parade is one of the founders of the Bare Bones International Film and Music Festival.

The theme for this year's parade is "Christmas Movies." ShIronbutterfly Ray will head the parade.

Ray also runs Broadway Studio in Muskogee.

"Because this is the 15th annual Bare Bones International Film Festival and the parade theme is Christmas movies, I just thought she would be a good grand marshal for this particular parade," said Lisa Susanne, the executive director of Downtown Muskogee Inc.

"I'm excited," Ray said. "I have not thought about being a grand marshal."

She isn't quite sure what her full list of duties will be, but she knows one thing she will do well.

"The only thing I've seen a grand marshal do is wave, and basically represent," Ray said.

"I think it's a good thing for the community," Ray said.

Ray has a bachelor's degree in behavioral sciences and psychology from California State University and a master's degree in education, specializing in early childhood education, from Pepperdine University.

She's listed as her hobbies: community volunteer, photography, videography, website building and maintenance, and Facebook enthusiast.

In 2005, she received a Governor's Arts Award for Special Recognition for the Darkwood Film Arts Institute, and the festival directors for the Bare Bones Film Festival received a Golden Halo Achievement Awards from the South California Motion Picture Council.

Ray was a volunteer for last year's parade, but this year she plans to be riding in style with a cinematic twist: "I'm looking for a convertible or carriage."

Ray will be following the parade theme with the help of a friend.

"One of my movie friends from Wagoner is making me an oversized movie camera mounted on the front of the car," she said.

"I like parades. I usually film the Azalea parade," she said.

The parade begins at 11 a.m. Dec. 7.

"I'm glad it's earlier in the day; it won't be as cold as night," Ray said.

The parade starts at Fifth Street and Okmulgee Avenue. It proceeds east along Okmulgee to Second Street, then goes north to Broadway. It turns west toward Sixth Street, and then goes south on Sixth to Boston Street.

Reach E.I. Hillin at (918) 684-2926 or

If you go

WHAT: Muskogee Christmas Parade, with the theme "Christmas Movies," featuring ShIronbutterfly Ray as the 2013 grand marshal.

WHEN: 11 a.m. Dec. 7.

WHERE: Parade begins at Fifth Street on Okmulgee Avenue, goes east to Second Street, north to Broadway, west to Sixth Street, and south on Sixth Street to Boston Street.

INFORMATION: Lisa Susanne, (918) 683-2400.


(c)2013 the Muskogee Phoenix (Muskogee, Okla.)

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