Parade Salutes Grand Marshals NRPD, NRFD and the Department of Public Works
"Here I come to save the day!" said Mighty Mouse. However this year, the theme is “here they come to save the day!” For fifty-three years the Thanksgiving Parade has been a beloved event in New Rochelle for so many people. Presented by the Chamber of Commerce and the City of New Rochelle, the 54th parade is taking place on Saturday, November 18th. This year those who ensure that the parade is safely patrolled with Santa following in a Fire Truck, and then cleared up within the day are being honored. Instead of being behind the scenes, for a change the New Rochelle Fire and Police Departments and the Department of Public Works is going to be the stars.
“Each year their work on the parade is exceptional and this year we want everyone to know how much they are appreciated today and always” says Jennifer Lanser, Executive Director of the New Rochelle Chamber of Commerce. “So this year holding the 38 foot Mighty Mouse balloon you will see some true heroes of our City.” Some of whom were recently honored for saving the life of a three-year-old boy who couldn’t breathe. City Manager, Chuck Strome, adds, “We are proud to honor the City's three major departments, whose members serve us with dedication every day. The parade is a perfect opportunity to applaud their work which is often unseen but always appreciated.”
Joining these genuine heroes and Mighty Mouse are seven other large balloons including Bert and Ernie of Sesame Street, Baby Smurf, The Grinch, Tom the Turkey and more. The balloon sponsors include Good Friend Storage Company, United Hebrew, Empire City Casino, MassMutual, Iona College, New Rochelle Auto/Body, Anna and Jack’s Treehouse, Operation Prom’s FashionU and Alicia’s Bakery. “It’s a great alternative for people with young children to come see the balloons in a much less crowded, more convenient environment,” says Andrew Feigenbaum of MassMutual, “…without the cost or hassle of trekking into New York City.” “It’s the great feel and excitement of the big balloons… right here in Westchester County,” says Rob Hayes, President of the Chamber and Part-Owner of the Beechmont Tavern.
For the first time in many years, all of the City’s Schools and three colleges will be represented. Beginning at 10 AM, the fun-filled event will feature 1800 marchers including the children of New Rochelle, organizations, businesses and 8 bands from in and around Westchester County. With music, a few floats, classic cars, Spiderman, Superman, Captain America, Wonder Woman and a special appearance by Santa Claus himself, the Thanksgiving Parade is the biggest one in New York outside of the Macy’s parade in New York City.
The parade is preceded by the Annual Pancake Breakfast by the New Rochelle Fund for Educational Excellence from 8-9:30 AM (marchers must leave by 9:15 AM to line up). Enjoy delicious pancakes served at New Rochelle High School at the Braemar and North Ave entrance! Tickets are $5 pp and proceeds go to the Fund. For more information visit www.nredfund.org
To find out more about the parade or if you are a band that would like to participate this year, visit http://newrochellechamber.org or call (914) 632-7222 Monday – Friday 11-3 PM.
Photo credit: Sara Caldwell