Greater Refuge float

Greater Refuge Temple’s purple-draped float carrying a gospel choir complete with drums and amplified keyboards won the award for most creative unit in this year’s Martin Luther King Jr. parade, and the Neighborhood Association Coalition’s float was named best decorated.

Those were among the awards presented at this morning’s Lakeland City Commission meeting to winners in the parade, held annually since 1990. This year’s parade, held Jan. 14, attracted 102 units. Trophies were awarded to 1st-place winners this morning.

Best Decorated Float

  • 1st – Neighborhood Association Coalition
  • 2nd – Medulla Elementary School
  • 3rd – Coleman-Bush Boosters

Best Decorated Vehicle

  • 1st – Buffalo Soldiers
  • 2nd – Unexpected Dance Group
  • 3rd – Mid Florida Credit Union

MLK Parade best decorated vehicle: Buffalo Soldiers motorcycle unit. #lkld

— Lkld Now (@LkldNow) February 6, 2017

Best Walking Unit

  • 1st – Goodie Treats
  • 2nd – New Mt. Zion M.B. Church
  • 3rd – Zion Hill Church

Best Step/Cheer Group

  • 1st – Lakeland Storm
  • 2nd – New Mt. Zion M.B. Church
  • 3rd – Zion Hill Church

2017 Judges Choice Awards

Best Performance High School Band

  • 1st – George Jenkins High School
  • 2nd – Kathleen High School Band
  • 3rd  – Kathleen High School JROTC Color Guard

Best Church Unit Affiliated with Theme

  • 1st– Greater Refuge Temple
  • 2nd Place – New Mt. Zion M.B. Church
  • 3rd Place – Pilgrim Rest Freewill Baptist Church

Most Creative Overall Unit Affiliated with Theme

  • Greater Refuge Temple

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Barry Friedman founded in 2015 as the culmination of a career in print and digital journalism. Since 1982, he has used the tools of reporting, editing and content curation to help people in Lakeland understand their community better.

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