Today we made the exciting announcement that two-time Olympic bobsleigh gold medalist, Kaillie Humphries, will lead the 2015 Parade!

Pictured: Kaillie Humphries,   native Calgarian, two-time Olympic gold medalist, 2014 Lou Marsh Award winner for Canada's top athlete and 2015 Calgary Stampede Parade Marshal!
Pictured: Kaillie Humphries, native Calgarian, two-time Olympic gold medalist, 2014 Lou Marsh Award winner for Canada’s top athlete and 2015 Calgary Stampede Parade Marshal!

President & chairman Bill Gray and Humphries made their grand entrance in a horse drawn carriage! Humpries’ bobsleigh helmet concealed her identity until Gray announced her name to the eager crowd.

Humphries confessed to the audience “when I got the call, I almost peed my pants!” She described her memories of growing up in Calgary and her mother dragging her up out of bed at the crack of dawn to get the best seats for the Calgary Stampede Parade*.

Pictured: President & Chairman Bill Gray and Kaillie Humphries
Pictured: President & chairman Bill Gray and Kaillie Humphries

“Ever since I saw the parade for the very first time, it has always been a wish that one day I would get to be on the horse that started the whole thing off,” says Humphries. “Growing up in this city has made me the person I am today, and being able to share the city’s biggest moment is a dream come true. Most people don’t understand how I could put this in the same realm as winning Olympic Gold, but dreams are dreams and getting to live them out is a blessing.”

Through and through, Humphries is a true Calgarian. Gray chose her to officially kick off the 2015 Stampede festivities because of her inspiring work in sport and as an ambassador for the I’ve been bullied campaign and Right to Play.

“Being who you are first and foremost, is more important than anything,” Humphries advised the crowd, “there aren’t limitations to life. There are no secrets to achieving goals and dreams.”

Humphries trading in her bobsleigh helmet for a cowboy hat.
Humphries trading in her bobsleigh helmet for a cowboy hat.

The Calgary Stampede Parade is organized by a team of passionate volunteers who make up the Stampede Parade committee. Each year, more than 350,000 spectators line the streets to watch the two-hour Parade. On Parade morning, most downtown offices and businesses are closed, and people spill onto the streets to celebrate the beginning of another Stampede.

The Calgary Stampede is July 3-12, 2015. The parade begins at 9 a.m. on Friday, July 3, for more information, please visit http://parade.calgarystampede.com/.

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*Those born and raised in Calgary know that snagging a prime curb location to watch the Parade from requires intense preparation: Step 1. Our unpredictable weather may put a damper on things– but rain or shine, the show must go on  so bring your parka, rain coat, blankets and hat(s); Step 2. Set your alarm clock to EARLY and prepare to wake up with the roosters! Die hard Parade fans will often camp out overnight on the streets; get there as early as possible to ensure you get a good seat.