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Las Vegas comes to Wisbech

On 3rd July young people from Wisbech participated in the annual Rose Fair Parade. Young people had been working on the float for several months before the event.

At the start of the project a committee was formed from representatives of Wisbech Youth Clubs, Wisbech Youth Council and NACRO. The committee involved both young people and members of staff. Some of the young people on the committee were representative of more than one group.

The theme of the parade was "Famous Places", which could be either real places or fictional. The committee came up with some ideas of themes and returned to their respective groups to obtain further suggestions and opinions. The overall vote was returned as "Las Vegas".

Suggestions on the contents of the float were obtained from groups and reported back via the committee. Various tasks were allocated to different groups according to the facilities available to them. As they have workshop facilities, NACRO were given the task of constructing the set. Youth Clubs (including Youth Council members) were tasked with props and costumes. As some costumes (Elvis and Showgirls) were considered to be a key item but too extravagant to produce, Classworks Costumes in Cambridge were recruited to help, they in turn help local schools/colleges and drama groups with costumes for productions. The committee were entirely responsible for saying what the float should look like and the allocation of tasks, thus giving them responsibility, improving their social skills, giving the opportunity to make new friends and meet new people from different organizations. Lots of young people were involved in various aspects of the project. For example some made costumes, some were involved in the set creation and some were on the float during the parade.

Local shops and suppliers were used to supply goods. For example various local charity shops were suppliers of a bridal gown and waistcoats. An overspend on the grant provided by the Fenland Youth District Council was subsidized by a Bag Pack, undertaken by members of the Youth Clubs and youth workers at the local Tesco Store.

On the day of the parade all participants assembled at the Queen Mary Centre in Wisbech. Approximately 25 young people took part and 7 staff members. All were dressed as characters with the Las Vegas theme. The "Showgirls" varied in age from 17 to 7 and the older girls assisted the younger ones with their costumes. Although the weather was very hot, everyone remained in character for the length of both parades, creating a fantastic atmosphere and promoting a positive image of local youth. Everyone who took part in the project thoroughly enjoyed themselves and there has already been talk about next years float!

Viva Las Vegas – Viva Wisbech and Viva Young People!!


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