Itâ€™s about more than picnics and sales.
Area residents can mark Memorial Day and the sacrifice of those who died in military service with a variety of parades designed not only to delight spectators, but to pay homage to fallen servicemen and servicewomen.
New Britainâ€™s Memorial Day services, honoring all members of the military past and present, will start tonight at 6 in the Fairview Cemetery Veterans Section, the back part of the cemetery when entering from Smalley Street, followed by a reception at the St. Jean Baptiste Society. Services will be held at New Britainâ€™s Memorial monuments on May 30, between 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
nâ€ŠNew Britainâ€™s Memorial Day parade takes place on May 30, the original date of Memorial Day. It kicks off at 6 p.m. on Broad Street and continues to the center of downtown on Main Street.
nâ€ŠBerlin residents can watch the Veterans Commission Memorial Day parade, which was moved to May 26, with a rain date of May 28, after three of the last four events forced it indoors. A fly-over by the Air Force C-130 plane is scheduled.
Starting at 9 a.m. at St. Paulâ€™s Church on Peck Street, the parade runs down Farmington Avenue and turns left on Massirio Drive, ending at Berlin Veterans Memorial Park, where a ceremony with an invocation, benediction and music will be held.
nâ€ŠThe Newington Memorial Day parade is stepping off Saturday at 10:30 a.m. at Main Street and East Robbins Avenue. The route continues 1.5 miles north through the center of Newington. Marchers will head west on Garfield Street to disperse at Mill Pond Park in front of Town Hall.
Following the parade, people are invited to attend the Ceremony of Roses in the Town Hall lobby. Boy and Girl Scouts will join members of the Newington Kiwanis Club, reading the names of the 30 residents killed in military combat and carrying roses to the monument outside. The Singing Seniors will perform and the Newington High School Band will play taps.
The 2018 grand marshal is Patrick Montes of Newington, an Iraq and Afghanistan veteran of the Army National Guard.
nâ€ŠPlainvilleâ€™s Memorial Day parade is stepping off from the corner of Whiting and Broad streets at 9 a.m. Monday. The parade will go west on Broad Street, then turn north onto Washington Street, east onto West Main Street, east on East Street, south onto Crown Street, then right onto Maple Street, left onto Whiting Street and end by the post office. All of these streets will be closed by 8:15 a.m.
Members of the local veterans council will be the parade marshals.
A ceremony will take place 15 minutes after the parade. Children from local middle schools and elementary schools will be reading winning essays on â€śWhat Memorial Day Means to Me.â€ť
State Rep. William Petit Jr. will also speak. Afterward, a wreath ceremony will be held at the monuments at Veterans Park.
Before the parade, a flag will be raised at the Plainville VFW at 6:30 a.m. A procession will then head to St. Joseph Cemetery for a wreath laying. From there, it will head to West Cemetery and then the East Street Burial Grounds for more wreath laying.
nâ€ŠSouthingtonâ€™s Memorial Day parade is stepping off from the rear parking lot of Derynoski school on Eden Avenue at 10:30 a.m. Monday and will end at the town green in front of the American Legion, where a ceremony will be held. Liberty Street and Eden Avenue are closing and detours will be in place about an hour before the parade.
nâ€ŠThe Forestville Memorial Day parade will be held Sunday at 2 p.m. It starts in Forestville Center, heads up Church Avenue to Washington Street and down Central Street. The rain date is Monday at 2 p.m.
nâ€ŠThe Bristol Memorial Day procession will kick off Monday at 9 a.m. on Race Street, proceeding down North Main Street to Memorial Boulevard.
There will be a ceremony after the procession and a meal for veterans at American Legion Seicheprey Post 2 at 22 Hooker Court after the ceremony. To attend the meal, call Tim Gamache at 860-977-2152.
nâ€ŠThe Terryville Memorial Day parade will be held Monday starting at 10:30 a.m. at the Fire Department headquarters on Harwinton Avenue and ending at Baldwin Green on Main Street (Route 6). While Plymouth used to have two Memorial Day parades, one for Terryville and one for Plymouth Center, this will be the only parade for the town this year.