I saw that before the big, flashy parades of the 1980s-present, there were simple afternoon "character parades" at Disneyland and Walt Disney World. They usually had Mickey Mouse leading the band followed by a cavalcade of Walt Disney characters marching or riding in vehicles, usually to the tune of the "Mickey Mouse Club March". They usually got all flash during Fantasy on Parade at Christmastime.

Can I find out anymore about the Character Parades.