Thousands of spectators along the Monument Hill Kiwanis Fourth of July Parade in Monument, Colorado, saw a JustServe parade entry manned by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
JustServe is a website and app dedicated to sharing information about local service opportunities and promoting service in each community.
Conner and Jackson Parr, brothers from the Meadow Run Ward, Colorado Springs North Stake, were two of the almost 30 stake youth walking along the two-mile parade route.
They wore JustServe t-shirts and carried a banner proclaiming the mission of JustServe: “Building unity through community service.” Full-time missionaries from the Colorado Colorado Springs Mission carried a large banner as well, showing the website address ComeUntoChrist.org.
Conner, age 17, said: “Everyone was really happy when the missionaries and our section went through, and it was just a really good all-around experience.”
The group handed out candy to the children along the parade route.
“I felt like I was making people happy,” Conner said.
His brother Jackson, 13, agreed: “I felt great participating in the parade because I knew I was making kids happy and spreading the work for JustServe.”
The parade started at 10 a.m., and the day was hot by Colorado standards, according to stake organizers, but they said all went well and the youth represented the Church and JustServe well.
Colorado Springs North Stake communication director Kevin C. Woodward said the teenage marchers had a good rapport with the crowd along the route — especially with the children — as they handed out candy and waved.
"We are grateful for the participation of so many eager youth who represented JustServe in the July 4th Monument Parade. These marvelous individuals are truly service minded," Woodward said.
Woodward said in the course of the parade, the stake’s youth participants spontaneously tidied up the parade route for those who would follow them.
The Monument Hill Kiwanis Club thanked them for helping to make the parade a “huge success.”
“This event provided a wonderful opportunity for us to heighten the community’s feeling of the spirit of JustServe,” Woodward said.
And Jackson Parr explained, "I felt like a better version of myself."