Plans are moving forward quickly for this year’s Founders’ Day Festival in Marana.

This week, the Town of Marana announced its latest development, that KOLD news anchor Dan Marries would serve as the grand marshal of the Founders’ Day parade the morning of Oct. 29.

The route can be found at

Marries has been with KOLD News 13 since June 1999. He moved here from Yuma, where he was the main anchor for KYMA-TV. Prior to that, he spent a year at the CBS affiliate in Mankato, Minn.

Marries holds a bachelor’s degree in mass communications/broadcast journalism from Mesa State College.

The other big news is that this year’s festival – scheduled for Oct. 27-30 – will mark the first time the event will stretch over more than one day and the first time the event is being held in October.

“One reason we moved the festival to October from March was that we were running into problems with schools being on spring break,” said Rodney Campbell, spokesman for the Town of Marana. “It didn’t make sense to have a family-oriented event when families are on vacation. This way the schools can get more involved.”

The extra activities also are made possible by the town’s partnership with the Southern Arizona Arts & Cultural Alliance. SAACA has already booked a full calendar of live musical acts Oct. 29-30, and has organized an arts and crafts festival to take place at Ora Mae Harn Park, 13250 N. Lon Adams Road.

SAACA is still accepting applications for the above event from artists, businesses and nonprofits. For more information, visit

“Producing festivals is its specialty,” said Campbell. “They do events like this all the time. It seemed natural to partner.”

Town officials also are excited that the festival is now an official event of the Arizona Centennial celebration, and appears on the state’s calendar.

“It’s pretty significant to be recognized that way,” Campbell said, adding the increased exposure should increase attendance throughout the event.

The town is still accepting applications for all manners of float entries.

“We’ve had very eclectic parades, with entries that are motorized with tractors and trucks, from churches, sports teams, and others,” said Campbell.

For more information and registration forms, visit the town’s website at

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