WAYMART—Flags will fly and veterans, residents and other community members will march down Belmont Street next Saturday, June 9 for the 2018 Pride & Patriotism Parade, followed by the annual Children's Carnival in Wayside Park.
Hosted by the Waymart Area Parties in the Park (WAPP), the long-running, annual event will begin with line up at 1:00 p.m. at the Robert D. Wilson School followed by parade kick off at 2:00 p.m.
Marchers will progress along the traditional route down Belmont Street, turn left onto Carbondale Road, and then promenade down South Street where it will terminate in Wayside Park.
WAPP President Lilian Rollison said the best place to view the promenade is on the corner of South Street and Belmont Street, facing the school.
After arriving in the park, there will be a program honoring local veterans and the Children's Carnival to carry the celebration through the afternoon.
“It's a parade that kind of encompasses everything,” said Rollison. “Memorial Day, July Fourth, all the parades that normally communities have, we do it all in one big parade.”
Rollison herself has been involved with the parade for two decades and its inception stretches back even farther than that.
For the first time ever in Pride & Patriotism's past, the parade will have a Grand Marshall around which to focus the event.
The honor goes to hometown hero Mike Minor, the Paralympian who took gold in the Men's Banked Slalom and bronze in the Men's Snowboard Cross at the 2018 Pyeong Chang Paralympics in South Korea earlier this year.
Rollison stated WAPP decided to grant this honor to Minor, “Because he's our hometown kid. We wanna honor him in any way we can and this is our initial way.”
In addition to the honorific title, Minor will also be lauded by Waymart Mayor, Charles Norella, with a proclamation naming June 9 as “Mike Minor Day.”
Rollison explained Minor will meander around the park following the parade, signing autographs and chatting with attendees to the afternoon's event.
The post parade carnival will feature food, music and an assortment of fun games and activities for children, including a bounce house.
Of the carnival, Rollison stated WAPP “... introduced it last year and the kids absolutely went bonkers for it.”
Noting the importance of bringing children to the family-oriented parade and carnival, Rollison stated, “We want the kids to realize what we're doing and why we're doing it and what we're celebrating.
“We're celebrating the flag and the flag means veterans, it means the Fourth of July, it means Memorial Day, it just means everything and we need the kids to have a real appreciation for our flag and what it represents.”
Rollison extended a grand thanks to local individuals and organizations who's contributions made the day's events possible.
Calling attention to a new Platinum Donor, Rollison said, “Welcome Next Era Energy to our list of sponsors.”
Other Platinum Donors include Grimm Construction, Pioneer Construction, Brundage Pharmacy, and the Waymart Lions Club.
This year's only Gold Donors is Cee Jay Portable Restrooms, Inc.
Silver Donors this year include: Keen Lake Campgrounds, Jenkins Transportation, The Salvation Army/Ladore Lodge, Sharkey's Fuels, The Waymart Building Center, and Waymart Hotel.
Bronze Donors this year are: Attorney Christopher Farrell; Honesdale National Bank; Dirlam Brothers; Jenkins-Howell Funeral Home, Inc.; Wayne County Republican Committee; Adams CATV; Inc., Re/Max Wayne; Universal Hair Design; Waymart Presbyterian Church; Waymart Eye Care, Inc.; One, Two, Tree Farm; Waymart Beverage; Ray's Suresave Market; Canaa Township Supervisors; B&B Crysler Dodge Jeep Ram; Beck, Gogolski, Poska & Co, Inc.; Gibney's Restaurant; GPI, Inc.; Red Maples Golf Course; Henshaw Trucking.
An additional donors this year is Jane Varcoe.
For any paraders looking to march on Saturday, there's still time to sign up as WAPP is taking participants “right up to the last minute,” said Rollison.
Those wishing to do so can fill out a registration form from the WAPP website: www.waymartpa.us.