Ronald McDonald representing local charity in Cherry Blossom parade

Listen to the content of this post:

MACON, Georgia (WMGT/41NBC) – It’s that time of year once again when the when the pinkest party on earth returns, the International Cherry Blossom Festival in Macon.

On Sunday March 24th, the 38th Annual Cherry Blossom Parade will make its way through downtown Macon. This year, the world’s most famous clown will be leading the whole thing, Ronald McDonald. He’s this year’s grand marshall and he’ll be representing Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Georgia.

“I think we’ll make the connection with the Ronald McDonald House because we have been here for 16 years,” said Bonnie Hopkins, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Georgia President and CEO. “It’s just really exciting to showcase Ronald as part of the International Cherry Blossom Festival and to be the lead car.”

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Georgia is located on Forsyth Street in Macon, right near Medical Center Navicent Health’s campus. It serves as a home away from home for families who have children staying in local hospitals. The charity offers a place to sleep, warm food every night and the convenience of just being down the road from your child.

Jordan and Maggie Connell, from Warner Robins, have been staying at the Ronald McDonald House for a few weeks. Their daughter, Adalyn Grace, was born three months before she was due. The baby was just 1 pound 10 ounces at birth.

“It really has been so much of a blessing to our family,” said Jordan Connell. “I mean really truly it’s been one of the best things that’s come out of this.”

Soon, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Georgia will be even larger. The charity home is expanding to include 14 new rooms, in addition to the 13 the house has now.


Previous articleMacon teen in hospital after being shot Friday night
Next articleStrong to potentially severe storms on the way this evening
Amanda is a producer and anchor for 41NBC News at Daybreak and 41Today. She comes to Macon from Watertown, NY where she was a reporter, fill in producer and anchor for three years at WWNY. She covered everything from hundred year old birthdays to the shooting death of a New York State Trooper. She also earned a Syracuse Press Club Award for her feature story "A Cheer for Keslie," about a young woman with down syndrome who joins her high school cheer team and is accepted and loved by her squad. Amanda is originally from Brookfield, Connecticut, a small town in the western part of the state. She attended Western Connecticut State University and graduated in May 2014 with a B.A in Media Arts Production. From there she went on to get her master's degree in Broadcast and Digital Journalism at the S.I. Newhouse School for Public Communications at Syracuse University. When she's not working, she enjoys watching movies, traveling and spending quality time with her fiancé, family and friends.