Gainesville’s 17th Memorial Day Parade is something special for the members of the Paul E. Bolding American Legion Post 7.
This year’s parade, which begins at 10 a.m. Monday, May 27, marks not only Memorial Day, but the 100th anniversary of Gainesville’s Legion post, according to Dave Dellinger, commander of the post and organizer of the parade.
Gainesville’s post shares a birthday with the American Legion as a whole, which this year also turns 100 years old.
As such, the parade won’t have a grand marshal this year but will instead be led by the members of Post 7, Dellinger said.
The parade begins at the Gainesville Civic Center and marches to the intersection of Jesse Jewell and E. E. Butler parkways. Lineup for parade participants begins at 7 a.m., according to the post. Lineup should be finished by 8:15 a.m. and roads will be blocked beginning at 8:30 a.m.
There are about 54 groups participating in the parade this year, and a handful of those are marching bands with some 200 members each. All told, Dellinger expects the 2019 parade to have well more than 1,000 participants.
Traffic should reopen between 12:30 p.m. and 1 p.m., according to the city of Gainesville.
The 2018 parade had more than 1,000 participants, and crowds can be as large as 5,000 people turning out to watch the parade, which honors Americans who have died while serving in the military.
The Memorial Day Parade is sponsored by the Paul E. Bolding American Legion Post 7 and the Northeast Georgia Veterans Coalition.