by nathan oster
The winning entry in this year’s Days of ’49 parade wasn’t a float, but rather, a grouping of three horses that were a testament to the virtue of patience.
Jessica Catlett, a groomer at Saam’s Vet Clinic in Basin and owner of Jess’s Grooming, spent most of Thursday and Friday and part of Saturday morning painting the three horses, which she borrowed from Dan and Gretchen Anders and Richard and Cassie Russell.
One horse featured an American flag on one side, the Wyoming flag on the other.
Another horse was painted like a zebra.
The third horse was a billboard promoting Jess’s Grooming and Saam Vet Clinic.
When asked how she did it, Jessica said the horse with the American and Wyoming flags on it was the most difficult of the three. She spent all day Thursday working on it, with Brittany Butz doing her best to keep the horse steady.
“Just had to be patient,” she said. “When (the horse) moved, we stopped. When it started getting antsy, we took it for a walk.”
The most challenging part was painting the white stars on the blue background. “It took 2 ½ hours just to do that,” she said. To ensure that each star looked the same, she used a stencil to create an outline, then went back over it with a brush.
Also assisting Jessica with the entry were Ryan Howe, who led one of the other horses, and Newt Butz, who threw candy to spectators lining the parade route.
Second place went to the Town of Greybull’s entry, “Rollin’ for the Gold.”
Bank of Greybull placed third, with its “9ers, Miners, 49ers” float. “Dressed as miners, we search for the elusive gold in the snow-capped mountains,” was the way they described their float.
Honorable mention went to Lisa’s.