Walking Tall: Kelso gets bird’s-eye view of festival
Nora Kelso goes to 75-100 parades and festivals a year – but never as herself. Kelso is recognizable as more than 45 characters that she created, including Ping, Pong and Bronco Betty.Saturday, Kelso – er – Ping, towered above the rest of Strawberry Days as she walked up Grand Avenue on stilts.
Her stilts were covered by long green stockings. She had on a little tutu, wings and a beak.”I love doing this because for the age group this is geared toward, it brings a superficial moment of joy to people who just might need it at that moment,” Kelso said.Kelso owns A List Entertainment, an entertainment company in Denver. This is the second year she’s been in the Strawberry Days parade.”I love coming to Glenwood,” Kelso said. “Here I get to enjoy the warmth of a small town for a weekend. That’s hard to find in Denver.”Kelso walks in the Cherry Creek Parade of Lights, and although Cherry Creek is larger, she likes Strawberry Days because the whole community participates.
“I can actually hear people in the parade calling out their friends’ names,” Kelso said. “That’s great!”Kelso started walking on stilts six years ago. She woke up thinking about what she could add to her business, and 24 hours later, she was on a pair of stilts.”Walking isn’t the hard part – stopping is,” Kelso said.In all the parades she’s been to, Kelso has only fallen twice.
Although she performs in winter parades, her biggest obstacle isn’t ice. It’s horse manure.”I have to hand it to Glenwood,” Kelso said. “The roads were great, and they didn’t put me behind a horse!”Contact Ivy Vogel: 945-8515, ext. email@example.com
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