Hope Parade Scheduled for Friday, Celebrates Comal County
Organizers hoping to shake off New Braunfels’ recent notoriety for racial divisiveness invite the public to join the ‘The Hope Parade – Celebrating Comal County’ this Friday, Sept. 25.
Participants will meet at 10 a.m. in the Rockin R River Rides parking lot, 1405 Gruene Rd, New Braunfels. The parade begins at 11 a.m.
Organizers Gina Motz, wife of incoming Comal County Constable Pct. 1 Charlie Motz, and Shannon O’Neal Canada, wife of musician and School of Rock owner Cody Canada, said in a Facebook post they are stepping up to “show the world who we really are.”
They describe the event as a “Trump Train” meant for everyone, regardless of political affiliation or even preference for a college sports team.
“New Braunfels and Comal County have always been represented as a place of friendship and community full of Gemutlichkeit (the good life),” Gina Motz and Canada posted on The Hope Parade – Celebrating Comal County Facebook page.
“With the canceling of the (Comal County) fair parade and recent events bringing a question of the character of our community, a few of us have sought away to show the world who we really are.
“We believe that our community is better than the select few who have cast a negative shadow. We are a community that believes in unity and hope for the future.
“…But this event is for all opinions – showing the world that we can have a difference of opinion, but still have respect for each other.
“So come and join us with your Biden, Trump, Longhorn, Aggie or any other flag of your choosing to circle the county and show the world who New Braunfels really is. Bring back that spirit of unity that the entire country shared on Sept. 12 all those years ago.”
On his Facebook page, Charlie Motz described the parade’s mission “to celebrate the community of Comal County through our belief that all opinions matter as protected by our First Amendment right.”
“There’s only one rule and it’s pretty simple,” Motz said. “This event as stated is to afford everyone the ability to exercise his or her First Amendment right. The rule is to be respectful of others’ beliefs. Obviously a few can ruin things for the many, and as such anyone who cannot respect this request are not welcome to participate, and we ask that you just stay home.”
Parades are especially popular this election season, with Trump Train NB winding its way weekly around the city and most recently, a Caravana Patria on Saturday that celebrated Mexican Independence Day.
On Sept. 5, dozens of boats waving Trump and American flags turned up for the Canyon Lake Patriot Boat Parade.
However, the Trump Train NB also attracted negative publicity after one of its members dragged a Black Lives Matter flag behind his pick up truck. In the aftermath of this incident, and also in response to complaints that Trump Train participants don’t obey traffic laws and create a public nuisance, Mayor Rusty Brockman on Sept. 9 issued a statement affirming the group’s right to free speech.
However, he warned the city will not turn a blind eye to issues that make residents feel threatened or afraid and promised to work with city leadership, the New Braunfels MLK Association Inc., non-profit organizations and other community leaders to promote inclusiveness.
On Sept. 10, parents and students of color who spoke at a Comal ISD board of trustees meeting complained about the school district’s lack of inclusiveness at Canyon High School.
On Sept. 14 New Braunfels was back in the news over a “USED-MEXICANS” billboard on I-35 near the Creekside shopping development.
The billboard was removed, with New Braunfels City Manager Robert Camareno issuing a statement that it did not reflect the city’s values.
- Turn left out of Rockin R onto Rock Street to Loop 337
- Take Loop 337 to SH 46
- Exit SH 46 / Walnut and turn right towards Bulverde
- Exit FM 2722 and turn right for 8 miles to FM 2673
- Turn Right on FM 2673 for 6 miles to FM 306
- Turn Right onto FM 306 for 10 miles to Common St.
- Turn Right onto Common St. to Union St.
- Turn Left onto Union St. to San Antonio St.
- Take San Antonio St. to the circle Downtown