Since its first run down Fillmore Street approximately 20 years ago, the parade has grown and seen a higher level of participation each year, said organizer Bobby McDaniel.
“Last year’s parade was absolutely wonderful,” said McDaniel. “I believe it was the biggest participation we’ve ever had, especially with how the young people turned out. The schools brought them, and Fillmore Street was lined with young people.”
Anyone who wants to participate in the parade should show up to the starting area at First Baptist Church in advance of the 10 a.m. starting time. The lineup will be on Fillmore Street and adjacent streets.
Participants are encouraged to display appropriate signs — including patriotic phrases or illustrations, as well as company names — and flags on their vehicles.
“Anybody who’s a patriot, we want them there,” said McDaniel.
McDaniel invited all local Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts troops to be part of the parade and said he hopes local schools will again bring their students.
“I’d like to urge all teachers to bring their classes out to let out young people get a lesson on patriotism,” said McDaniel. “I think it’s very important for them to know what some in the military went through to provide us these freedoms. I’m not one of the ones who went through the worst parts, but many did.”
The Veterans Day Parade will conclude with a ceremony at the Alcorn County Courthouse.
The theme for this year’s parade is “Airborne” in honor of Parade Marshal Bill Wages — who served in the 82nd Airborne Division — and all those who served in Airborne units.
The parade was founded by two local men who served their careers in the military and went on to actively support veterans in the area — Bill Huff and Steve Wallace. Huff is also founder of the Military Families Honor Guard, a group of ex-military volunteers who perform military honors for the funerals of veterans. Wallace is a former veterans services officer in Alcorn County.
After the parade, the American Legion Post 6 on Tate Street will serve stew beginning at 11 a.m.
For more information about the Veterans Day Parade call Bobby McDaniel at 415-6415.