Opelousas, Louisiana(KLFY) – The Half Fast Krewe of Frank’s Parade, a tradition that’s been rolling through the streets of Opelousas for years, was in jeopardy because of the recent budget cuts to the Opelousas Police Department.
Anonymous donors stepped in and the parade is back in action for Mardi Gras day.
The Opelousas Police Department is cutting back on overtime pay which directly impacts local parades and festivities in the city.
Police Chief Thompson says “organizations who put on a parade, as well as schools would have to pay for the security of the officers .”
Mayor Reginald Tatum tells News 10 he spoke with the organizer of the parade and what obstacles they were facing.
Mayor Tatum says the organizer “had dropped the fee where it was free for anyone to get in the parade and he really personally couldn’t afford to pay for the 20 police officers it would take to run the parade.”
Residents who asked to remain anonymous, generated two grand in a short period of time in order to pay for the officers so that the tradition can continue for its 18th year.
“I just want to thank those citizens in Opelousas who helped out and made sure we can have this parade,” says Mayor Tatum.
Police Chief Donald Thompson says he’s inspired by the donors.
“It’s a great thing to know that I have people in the community who support the police department, and support other business places and want to bring things to the city, and that’s what changed things around,” says Chief Thompson.
The parade will kick off at 11am on Fat Tuesday and the route runs through Landry street.