Area residents will enjoy many opportunities to remember and honor the men and women who have given their lives in service this Memorial Day.
Monday will mark the annual celebration of the United States federal holiday of Memorial Day, which has been occurring for more than a century. Local residents, businesses and organizations will join in celebration by hosting various events ranging from parades and speeches to summer season kickoffs. In addition to being a day to recognize those who have died in service of the United States Armed Forces, Memorial Day also marks the unofficial beginning of the summer season.
According to Andrew Finson, president of the United Veterans Council of Jamestown, a somber parade is held in Jamestown each year on Memorial Day. The parade includes the various veteran councils throughout the city.
More than a dozen Memorial Day events are planned across the county.
P-J file photo
"The purpose of the parade is to remember those who gave their lives fighting in service of our country and the veterans who have passed - not just those who have died in action," said Finson. "It's also a time where we remember those in our organizations who have passed away in the last year too. The idea is to keep their legacy alive."
MEMORIAL DAY EVENTS
The Jamestown parade kicks off at Main and Fourth streets at 10 a.m. The parade will take a left on Prendergast Avenue and will end at Soldier's Circle in Lakeview Cemetery. At the end of the parade a ceremony will be held at Soldier's Circle featuring a guest speaker, several readings, a keynote address, live music by the Jamestown Municipal Band and a flag raising to conclude the event at noon.
Falconer's parade begins at 10 a.m. at Dow Street and ends at Pine Hill Cemetery. During the event, Falconer American Legion Henry Mosher Post 638 will donate nearly 1,000 flags to those in attendance.
The Busti community's annual Memorial Day parade will begin at 9 a.m. at the former New Beginnings Restaurant on Sugar Grove Road. A memorial service will be held at the Busti gazebo following the parade.
The village of Celoron and the Celoron American Legion Herman Kent Post 777 will hold Memorial Day services at the Veteran's Memorial in Lucille Ball Memorial Park at 9 a.m. In addition to the honor guard and firing squad from the Herman Kent Post 777, a contingent of the 822nd Squadron of the Royal Canadian Air Cadets will be present. After the service, a parade will begin at Southwestern School at 10:45 a.m. and end at Sunset Hill
Gerry will host a Memorial parade Sunday beginning at 2 p.m. at the rodeo grounds. The parade will march to the cemetery on Route 60, and a program will follow. Kennedy's parade begins at Ellington Street and Route 394 at 11:45 a.m. Monday and ends at the Riverside Cemetery. The event
will feature keynote speaker Robert Clark of North Tonawanda, who retired from The United States Navy.
Bemus Point will host a Memorial Day parade beginning at 9 a.m. at 60 Lakeside Drive. The Bemus Point-Stowe Ferry will open for its 202nd season during Memorial Day weekend. It runs Fridays from 5-9 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 1-9 p.m. Memorial Day through Labor Day. There is no cost to ride the ferry, but donations are accepted.
Sinclairville will host a Memorial Day parade beginning at 9 a.m. in front of the Sinclairville Post Office. Participants will march to the Evergreen Cemetery where the parade will conclude.
The city of Dunkirk will host Memorial Day services at 10 a.m. at Memorial Park on Lakeshore Drive West. A parade will begin at 11 a.m. and proceed east on Lake Shore Drive west to Central Avenue and ends at Washington Park.
A Memorial Day service will also be held at Dunkirk's historical lighthouse beginning at 8:45 a.m.
Several other opportunities include events such as the Grape Discovery Center, which will make its debut on Memorial Day. The Concord Grape Belt Heritage Association Inc. will open its information center, retail outlet and tasting room on Route 20, west of Westfield, beginning on Saturday. The North Shore Arts Alliance will present the Chautauqua-Lake Erie Art Trail beginning on Saturday at 10 a.m. Midway State Park will host a Memorial
Day weekend kick-off beginning at noon on Saturday and running through Memorial Day. Cross Roads Market in Westfield will also be open for Memorial Day.
According to the Weather Channel's Memorial Day forecast, Monday will be partly cloudy with a high of 67 degrees, a low of 54 degrees and a 10 percent chance of rain.