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Drunk-driving Shriners injure 12 in Fourth of July parade rampage

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The Giant Napkin

Drunk-driving Shriners injure 12 in Fourth of July parade rampage

July 5, 2007

GREENVILLE, S.C.—Several members of a group of Shriners performing in Greenville’s Fourth of July parade lost control of their comically tiny vehicles, injuring 12 onlookers. An investigation after the wreck revealed the Shriners had a blood alcohol content of .11, over the state’s legal limit of .08.

While no one was severely hurt, 3 young spectators were taken to Shriners Hospital for Children as a precaution. Witnesses said when they saw the Shriners speeding towards them, they were not concerned, assuming it to be part of their routine and expecting them to turn at the last second to avoid them.

“You always see them coming right at you,” said parade spectator Julie Weber. “This time Shriners just started flying everywhere into the crowd. It was very scary, but I did catch one of their hats.”

Most witnesses agreed the Shriners’ wreck was as or more entertaining than their normal routines, which include the figure eight and the tight circle. “I saw a Shriner hurled 15 feet,” recalled Max Sarver, a Fourth of July parade regular. “Now, that was funny.”

Children in attendance always seem to like the old men in small cars, and Wednesday was no exception. Most children reported the scene to be funny and expressed that they have always wanted to see elderly men propelled through the air.

The group of Shriners admitted to enjoying alcoholic beverages prior to the parade but did not think anything of it. “We didn’t think it was a very big deal,” said Ed White, Shriner street performer. “Before a parade, we usually drink even more than that.”

Further Reading:

The Royal Order of Jesters - The Shriners Secret Society Secret Society - 'Mirth is King'

The Shriners - The 'Krafty' Klowns