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      Big turnout for the Ottumwa Oktoberfest Parade

      The streets of downtown Ottumwa were packed Saturday morning as the 38th Annual Ottumwa Oktoberfest Parade took place.

      Marching bands from middle schools and high schools throughout southeast Iowa participated in the event. The parade also including hundreds of floats and other entries.

      The parade kicked off at 10 a.m., led by the Grand Marshall, Mr. Schwartz, owner of The Hotel Ottumwa.

      Schwartz, and his family, have been at the forefront of revitalizing downtown Ottumwa throughout the years; and organizers thought that this would be a great way to honor him.

      Members of the United Way of Wapello County participated in a flash mob in front of the judges' table. Folks KTVO spoke with said that the flash mob was one of their favorite portions of the event.

      Each participant in the parade was judged by members of the Ottumwa Chamber of Commerce. The big winners for the 2011 parade were the crew from John Deere.

      John Deere had great entries, which included many different types of tractors and other types of farm equipment.

      As of Saturday evening, KTVO does not know the estimated crowd in attendance, but KTVO employees that participated in the parade say that it was one of the larger crowds they have seen in quite sometime.