Great Scots Parade in a Mini Convertible

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Great Scot! Parade in front of the Westin Poinsett Hotel

This Memorial Day weekend actually started Thursday morning, and it’s just barely getting started. So far I’ve been kayaking, gone to a midnight movie to see X-Men: Days of Future Past, attended a history lecture on old maps, looked for mythical meteors, visited an Irish pub, and had coffee and a great visit with old friends – and it’s only Saturday. The highlight so far, though, has been our participation in the Great Scot! Parade through downtown Greenville with the Upstate Minis.

A couple of weeks ago Jeff Goodman had posted on the Upstate Minis Facebook page about the group participating in the parade. I asked Laura if she were interested, and she jumped at the chance. So, Friday afternoon a little after 5:00 we lined up with ten other Minis on Townes Street. We would bring up the rear of the parade.

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We introduced ourselves to the other Mini drivers (Minnie Driver??) and watched as other parade participants gathered.

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Jeff gave us some last minute instructions, and at about 5:45 we mounted up. I was wearing a Scottish sort-of hat and my Furman tartan tie. I didn’t have a kilt.

Tom with Mini

Photo by Don Western

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Scottish Parade Selfie

Using the suction cup attachment, I mounted the GoPro to the top of the windshield. That way we wouldn’t have to shoot video through a dirty windshield, but would get a clear view from above.

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Soon enough we were setting out. We made our slow approach down Townes past streets that were blocked off. Traffic was backing up, and some motorists were NOT happy and started honking. At one intersection a brown Mini Countryman was the first car waiting. Laura and I waved them over to join us, and they did! I’m sure they will have a wild story to tell later that evening.

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We turned onto West North Street, then onto Main Street, where the crowds were gathered. It was somewhat surreal. Hundreds of people were gathered on the streets waving at us, cheering, and taking our photos.

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The crowds were great, but we were at the end of the parade. It was hot, and some folks were already leaving. However, there were still quite a few to cheer us on.

People really loved our little convertible. However, the comment I kept hearing from the crowd was, “They’ve got a GoPro!” The camera apparently was as popular as the car.

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The parade continued down Main, past the Poinsett Hotel. Along the way I spotted several people I knew in the crowd. Glynda, Chip, Anna, and the kids were waiting for us in front of Soby’s, so we waived at them as we went by. That was right at the end of the route, just above the Peace Center. Our motorcade pulled onto the Reedy River Bridge, and it was over, taking just about 20 minutes to complete.

After the parade a group of us headed over to Fitzpatrick’s Irish Pub for dinner, drinks, and gear head camaraderie. Yeah, I know. We were in a (semi) British vehicle, had just participated in a Scottish Parade, and were now at an Irish Pub. It was still fun.

I put together a short video for YouTube. I didn’t use the entire 18 minutes of video, but select sections. The music is something I found on Archive.org, since we could just barely hear the pipes from our position in the parade.

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Comment (1)

  1. Julia Holman

    That is so cool! I love that you waved a random Mini into the parade, great way to recruit even more drivers and their Minis for next year.
    Did you make it out to Furman to take in the British car show on Saturday?

    Reply

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