Before it was discontinued in 2007, the community event had been a fall tradition for years. However, this weekend was the first time the city of Powder Springs has hosted the occasion. Cobb-based JRM Management helped the city plan and organize the one-day celebration.
Powder Springs Mayor Pat Vaughn and the city council thought it would be a good idea to revive Powder Springs Day in order to continue to build relationships with residents and businesses.
"Our citizens had been asking to bring it back," Vaughn said. "They loved the parade and so that's why we did it."
A morning parade began on Atlanta Street near the Powder Springs Library. The one-mile parade traveled north on Old Austell Road and then cut west onto Marietta Street, past the Country Store of Seven Springs, before ending at the intersection of Old Dallas Road and Jackson Way.
Residents lined both sides of the route, with arms stretched out, to catch candy and other goodies tossed by smiling parade participants.
Pastor Mike Wood of First Baptist Church of Powder Springs, a South Cobb Citizen of the Year, served as the parade's grand marshal. Participants included Vaughn and other politicians, the McEachern High School JROTC Color Guard, Hillgrove High School Marching Band, American Legion, Push Rods Antique Cars, students from Ace Premier Cheer Gym, Miss Cobb Outstanding Teen Copelyn Jue and Mrs. Georgia-America LaLona Richards.
"I've been coming here since I was a little girl," said Powder Springs native Casey Ledford, 23, who now lives with her husband Marc Ledford and daughter Elizabeth in nearby Dallas. Elizabeth, 2, was dressed in orange Halloween inspired clothing.
Following the downtown parade, there were arts and crafts, food, entertainment and children's activities in Powder Springs Town Square. City organizers expected several thousand people to attend throughout the day.
Among the entertainers were the Powder Springs Elementary School Chorus, the Downtown Dance Team and a solo performance by Aisha Bryant. LaLona Richards, Mrs. Georgia-America, was scheduled to kickoff her Frankie's First foundation in the area by requesting donations of new and gently used books that will be distributed to low-income schools.
The city of Powder Springs was incorporated as Springville in 1838. The land had previously belonged to two Cherokee Indian groups before the first settlers came to the area to find gold, according to historians. In 1859, after the "Trail of Tears" forced the Cherokee off the land, the name of the city was changed to Powder Springs in commemoration of seven local springs.
For decades, people like Charles and Jean Gibson have found their way to Powder Springs, tucked into the southwestern part of the county and dotted with modest homes and country shops. The couple has called the city of roughly 15,600 people home for the past two years.
"It's very pleasant," said Charles Gibson, 66, as he watched the parade inch pass him. "Nice day, great morning and a nice thing to do."
City officials plan to continue Powder Springs Day as an annual event on the second Saturday of October.
"It was very successful and everyone enjoyed the day," said Vaughn.