Memorial Day Parades in the Greater Hartford Area | Kids Out and About Hartford

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Memorial Day Parades in the Greater Hartford Area

Anyone can have a parade. Only Americans can have a parade to celebrate the greatest political achievements in history: establishing and repeatedly defending a country founded on the principle of individual liberty. Memorial Day, which was originally called Decoration Day because it was a day on which the graves of fallen soldiers were decorated, was established in the years after the Civil War to honor those who died in that war. Today, it is a day of remembrance of all who have died in this country's service.

Bravery. Honor. In President Lincoln's famous words, giving the last full measure of devotion to the defense of freedom. These are difficult ideas to explain to children, but it is our responsibility as parents to do it.

Start by bringing your kids to the Memorial Day Parade in your town. During the parade, demonstrate for them the solemnity and gratitude due to the veterans who march past. Take off your hats as they go by. Explain to your kids why we show respect for the flag. With them, cheer for the bands and salute the men and women in our police and fire departments. Think about those currently serving our country in the military around the world, and, perhaps, reflect with your children about the gratitude we owe their courage. If you know parents with a child in the military, take a few minutes to find a way to convey your thanks.

Click here for a brief history of Memorial Day in the U.S., courtesy of the Waterloo, NY web site. Below the following list of dates and times for this year, we have compiled some other good links for those of you ambitious enough to explore further the meaning of Memorial Day.

Click here for a list of this year's Memorial Day Ceremonies as compiled by the National Cemetery Administration

Saturday, May 26th

Berlin Memorial Day Parade: The parade will step off at 9:00 a.m. from St. Paul's parking lot, Peck Street, go down Farmington Avenue, turn left onto Massirio Drive and left onto Veterans Way. In the event of rain, the Memorial Day Parade will be held on Monday, May 28, 2018.

Wethersfield Memorial Day Parade: Celebrate Memorial Day at the annual parade in charming and historic Wethersfield! At the conclusion of the parade, a Memorial Day Ceremony will be held at the Village Cemetery on Marsh Street. If you or an organization you are a member of would like to participate in this year's parade contact us today.  Start time 9am. 

Newington Memorial Day Parade: Main Street & Robbins Avenue, Newington CT. The annual Memorial Day Parade in Newington will step off at 10:30 a.m. at Main Street and East Robbins Avenue. Marchers will proceed north on Main Street to Walsh Avenue and then west to town hall.

Sunday, May 28th 

Town of Enfield Memorial Day Parade: The parade kicks off a 1:00PM on Sunday, May 27, 2016 in front of the Old Town Hall Museum. Roads along the parade route, including route 5 at the Old Town Hall , will close to traffic shortly before the parade starts and remain closed until the parade passes. Pending 2018

Woodbury Memorial Day Parade: 2 pm The Woodbury Memorial Day Parade begins at Woodbury Middle School and ends at Cannon Green on Main Street for a ceremony. Pending 2018

Cheshire Memorial Day Parade: The parade will begin at 1:30 p.m. at the Cheshire Police Department/Highland School and will end at Cheshire High School. Join as spectators, or if you are interested in marching in the parade, please contact Stephanie at the Parks and Recreation Department at (203) 272-2743 or via email at

Ansonia Memorial Day Parade: 2pm Come Honor Those Who Gave All....Say Thanks To Our Honored Veterans and ACtive Servicemen and Women. Parade starts at Nolan Field, down Wakelee Ave, Down Jackson St, over the Maple St. Bridge and through Main Street.

Orange Memorial Day Parade:Parade ceremonies will commence promptly at 10:30 a.m. at the Orange Fairgrounds at the gazebo.  The parade will step off immediately following the ceremony down Orange Center Road past the reviewing stand with services following at the Orange Center Cemetery.  The Committee anticipates many marching bands and floats.  The Committee invites the public to join in honoring our nation’s veterans.  In the event of rain, exercises will be moved to the High Plains Community Center Auditorium.


Monday, May 28th


Avon Memorial Day Parade: The Parade will step off at 11:00am from the parking lot of Sperry Park on Simsbury Road. At 11:30 a.m., a memorial service will be held at the Avon Veteran’s Memorial on the Town Green with Post Commander, Jim Hutton, a veteran of the Vietnam War, will serve as master of ceremonies.

Canton Memorial Day Parade: The parade begins at 10am heading south on Dyer Ave from Canton Intermediate School; taking a right onto Maple Ave; taking a left onto Main Street; taking a right onto Center Street and proceeding to the Village Cemetery where a memorial service will be held.

Glastonbury Memorial Day Parade: The parade will begin at 9:00am at Main Street and Welles, continue down Hubbard, and conclude with a 45 minute service at the Civil War Memorial on the Town Green.  This parade is open to the public and is intended to be a solemn event. Pending 2018

Hartland Memorial Day Parade: 10am Starts at Town Hall and marches to Center Cemetery for a short ceremony - marches back to Town Hall

Manchester Memorial Day Parade: The parade steps off promptly at 9:30 a.m. from the Army & Navy Club, 1090 Main Street, and turns east on East Center Street, west at Munro Park, and will conclude at Center Memorial Park for a Memorial Day Program. In case of rain, the Center Memorial Park Program will be held at the Full Gospel Interdenominational Church, 745 Main St, at 11am. Marchers should assemble at 8:45am at the Army & Navy Club. The Public is invited to attend.

South Windsor Memorial Day Parade and Ceremony: 10 am The South Windsor Memorial Day Parade begins at the corner of South Satellite Road and Nutmeg Road South; to Pleasant Valley Road ending at Veterans Memorial Park, where the ceremony will take place. 

West Hartford Memorial Day Parade: 10 am West Hartford takes great pride in hosting its annual Memorial Day Parade. It follows a tradition established by returning West Hartford veterans from World War I in the 1920s. Parade route: Farmington Avenue to South Main Street, ends at Town Hall.


More links

Joshua ChamberlainCheck out some of the stories and thoughts of Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, who is credited with holding the Union position at Little Round Top at Gettysburg, and was an eloquent professor of rhetoric from Maine besides.


The 54th RegimentOr read about Robert G. Shaw, who was the 26-year-old commander of the 54th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment, the first black regiment of the Civil War. Matthew Broderick starred as Colonel Shaw in the 1989 film about the regiment, Glory, which also featured Denzel Washington and Morgan Freeman.


Nathan Hale being executedYou could also discuss with them the patriot Nathan Hale, who was the first American captured and executed for spying on the British during the Revolutionary war. He is the originator of the often-repeated "I only regret I have but one life to lose for my country."



Raising the flag at Iwo JimaFor a bit more recent history, you might show your children the famous picture of Strank, Block, Sousley, and their comradestaken just before these three died on Iwo Jima, and talk about what it means.




Or, you might stick with the incomparable words of Lincoln on the topic, so that your children understand that indeed, the heros we honor on Memorial day have done much more than their share, and that it is "for us the living, be the great work which they who fought ...have thus far so nobly advanced."