The Indian Trail Town Council has selected Grace Laney as the Grand Marshal for this year’s July 3 Parade.
“I am grateful to be chosen as Grand Marshal for this year’s parade,” Grace said. “I have grown up attending this parade every year, so to be a part of it, especially as Grand Marshal, makes this a special opportunity. Thank you to the members of the Lion’s Club who nominated me and the Town Council for selecting me this year.”
Grace is a rising freshman at Porter Ridge High School. At only 15 years old, Grace has done more to give back to her community than most people do in a lifetime. It all started when she received a sewing machine for Christmas one year and began sewing pillows to donate to animal shelters in North Carolina, South Carolina and Florida.
She has continued to put her sewing skills to good use, making more than 1,000 masks for essential workers, military personnel, first responders and hospitals during the pandemic. Grace also recently completed sewing 50 bears, which she will donate to St. Jude’s Hospital.
Grace continues to maintain her “Fitness Friday” program on YouTube, which she started during the pandemic to help people stay active. She also recently raised $350 for Comfort Cases, a program that provides foster children with suitcases or duffel bags, so they have somewhere to keep their personal items when moving between homes.
For her latest venture, Grace is in the process of establishing a Blessing Box in the Sun Valley Commons. Once built, the box will be stocked with a variety of essential needs, such as food, blankets, school supplies and toiletries. Those interested in supporting the Blessing Box can follow the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ITBlessingBox.
Thanks to all her time spent giving back, Grace received the 2019 and 2020 Gold Presidential Award, which requires more than 250 hours of unpaid community service to obtain.
In addition to her community service, Grace is a member of the Charlotte City Ballet and participates in pageants. She is the reigning USA Elite Miss North Carolina Jr. Teen and will attend the national competition in Charleston at the end of July.
Grace will help kick off the parade at 11:30 a.m. beginning at Post Office Drive. Floats will travel one mile to Old Monroe Road, where the parade will conclude. Numerous spots will be available along the route to watch the parade. Those unable to attend will be able to watch the parade live through the Town’s Facebook page.
“Indian Trail has a proud tradition of hosting the July parade to celebrate Independence Day, and we are so glad to be back this year,” said Hayden Kramer, Parks and Recreation director. “We love being able to bring the community together for this event and are proud to host Grand Marshal Laney for the day and look forward to celebrating with the Town.”