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The events in this story are 100% accurate. This is not a joke. Post updated to include a response from the Trolley Pub owner.
The Raleigh Christmas Parade was almost derailed by a rogue Trolley Pub on Saturday. As you know, the Raleigh Christmas Parade, presented by Shop Local Raleigh, features a variety of groups and organizations from our community that we all know and love. For some reason, the Trolley Pub is allowed to participate, despite the fact that it has nothing to do with Christmas and brings joy to no one. While it is worth noting that the Trolley Pub partners with the American Diabetes Association for the parade, I still loathe 95% of their customers. This year, four Trolley Pubs were scheduled to ride in the parade, yet only three of them ended up participating.
When I posted this Zapruder-like film of the Trolley Pub being extremely loud and obnoxious at 9:30 am I had no idea that I was capturing the moments immediately before this rogue agent would be leaving the Christmas parade.
After seeing the video, sources reached out to inform me that this particular Trolley Pub was kicked out of the parade because they were being too loud, drunk, and obnoxious. Apparently, the riders had rented the buzzkill on wheels for a 30th birthday party and were told by the company that they would be able to ride in the Christmas parade. A chance to get drunk AND be the center of attention is what these people dream of.
According to two separate sources, the riders began drinking in the early hours of the morning. A parade official approached the group and informed them that alcohol was not allowed in the parade, to which one rider replied, “What?! But the point of this is to get DRUNK.” The parade official clarified that while getting “DRUNK” may be the point of the Trolley Pub, the point of the Christmas parade was to provide family entertainment for the people of all ages in attendance. The riders countered, “But we already paid for this, we’re riding in the parade whether you like it or not.” The parade official warned them that the Raleigh Police Department would have the right to cite them for having open containers in public. They resisted again, gave the official the one finger salute, at which point the parade official gave up to go check on Santa Claus. (Apparently, Santa’s tour rider demands check ins every 15 minutes) The Raleigh Police Department approached the Trolley Pub riders, determined that they were too intoxicated and obnoxious to be in public, and pulled them from the parade. One down, three to go.
A response from the Trolley Pub owner shed more light on the matter:
“This year I was out of town and apparently a tour asked/or was invited to join but were not informed of the rules. Our mistake. When one of the parade officials came up one of the customers got upset but quickly settled down. Management found out and we decided it was best for that group to exit the parade at a convenient point, and the tour agreed. That Trolley was cleared to enter the parade and participated for part of it but left early. So no Trolley Pub was “kicked out”.”
The parade began and crowds looked on in disgust as the remaining unholy trinity of Trolley Pubs slowly chugged down Hillsborough Street.
Most parents shielded their children from the horror. Some used it as a teaching experience on what not to do in life.
After the Trolley trio had terrorized everyone and almost ruined the entire parade, a miracle happened. The sweet sounds so familiar to many of us could be heard coming down the street. It was the Broughton marching band, bringing the joy of Christmas to all. Once again Broughton saved the day, and no one even had to buy a mattress from them. (I still don’t understand why Broughton moved from selling fruit to selling mattresses to raise money for the marching band.)
Overall, the parade was a huge success and enjoyed by all in attendance. I do have a few minor suggestions for next year:
1.) Ban all Trolley Pubs
2.) Add a Dogs of ITB float
3.) Include more Tahoes
4.) Hoverboards – not those fake ones that people break their legs on, the real ones from Back to the Future II. That movie already predicted the Cubs winning the World Series and the rise of Trump (Biff Tannen). Hoverboards can’t be that far off.
5.) More giant inflatable balloons. A Lemon La Croix can, for example.
6.) Famous live performers on floats, including: The Connells, a hologram Michael Jackson, and a hologram Nat King Cole.
7.) A Rise Biscuits float with a biscuit/donut canon that shoots biscuits and donuts out to the crowd.
8.) Felson’s Dance Floor Float – no explanation necessary
While it was good to see one less Trolley Pub in the parade, that’s not enough. I’ll be speaking with parade officials in the coming weeks to determine how to remove the Trolley Pub from the Raleigh Christmas Parade entirely. Stay tuned. And Merry Christmas!