Float construction:

Remember to apply early for parades and find out what the rules are. You should also call your local fire marshal as there are usually rules about what floats can be made of, pyrotechnics, smoke machines, having fire extinguishers on the float, etc.

There are links below to some information on float construction and suppliers. I strongly urge you to visit all the pages and get the manuals that are in the file area of RonPaulGrassRootsAction. These manuals are not all the same. Most start with a trailer, one tells you how to build one from scratch. Others are built on lawn tractors, cars, trucks, etc. Some are basic, others go into wire frame, cardboard, paper mache, and welding large, animated forms. Check them all out they aren't that big.

Here are some resources for float construction.

The Vaughn Displays company, now known as Victory Corps is the worlds largest company to sell float supplies, kits and plans. They are also the oldest, having started business in 1904. They are the ones responsible for making floats a part of American culture. They will send you a free book on making floats and their catalog for the asking:
http://www.victorycorps.com/
http://americanhistory.si.edu/collec...=35&objkey=752

HowTo float construction pages:
http://www.madehow.com/Volume-4/Parade-Float.html
http://www.astroparade.com/htb.htm
http://www3.ashland.edu/events/homec...dermanual.html
http://www.valleydecorating.com/howto.html

This site has video of floats being made:
http://www.archives.gov.on.ca/ENGLIS...e_a_parade.htm

Other suppliers:
http://www.paradesetc.com/

Also of note is the book, available from the file area and on-line here on making really big puppets (the kind you see in parades) think huge costumes:
http://www.gis.net/~puppetco/

They also operate 2 free puppet lending libraries, one in Boston the other in NYC:
http://www.gis.net/~puppetco/libraries.htm

Here, they experiment with homemade inflatables. These could be made air born by putting some helium balloons inside them or attaching a hose (perhaps from a cars exhaust pipe?) to keep refreshing them with hot air.
http://www.gis.net/~puppetco/inflatables.htm

Other resources for making inflatables include:
http://www.akairways.com/getyourown.shtml
http://homepage.mac.com/gowithflo/te...flatables.html
http://www.instructables.com/id/EJ3W7BWWOHEXCFCZMY/
http://www.sculpture.net/community/a...hp/t-2638.html
http://www.airartists.co.uk/index2.html
http://www.pingmag.jp/2006/03/30/inflatables/
http://www.imagine-inflatables.com/p...flatables.html
http://www.aerocreativ.ru/english/index.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inflatable
http://www.alvimar.com/giants.html


Nathan