Delaware’s celebration of veterans will return on Sunday, Nov. 11 — Veterans Day — with the annual Veterans Day parade through downtown Delaware. To make the day even more special, this year’s holiday will mark the 100-year anniversary of the end of World War I and the creation of Veterans Day.
The parade will step off at Wilmer Street near Ohio Wesleyan University at 3 p.m. and will make its way down Sandusky Street to the fairgrounds.
Margo Litke, the parade organizer, said there are currently over 400 participants signed up to be a part of the parade, with approximately half of them being veterans. While the original cutoff date for applications was yesterday, Litke said applications are still being accepted. Anyone interested in participating should email Litke at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Registration can also be done on the day of the parade. There will be an information desk located in the tennis court lots at OWU, just off Harrison Street. The deadline to register on parade day is 1:30 p.m.
Litke said veterans selected to be in the parade are done so by the parade committee and are those who are recognized through other agencies for their work in the community.
Members of the parade committee include Kim Jan Tausch, Richard Mason, John Garbin, John Crouse, Marty Crawford, Bob and Kim Summerfield, Joe Papworth, Jim Halter and Mayor Carolyn Kay Riggle.
The Delaware County Board of Commissioners and the City of Delaware also provide assistance with the parade, Litke said.
The parade is entirely paid for with funds that are raised from events such as dine-ins around local businesses where a percentage of the bill goes to the parade, as well as donations from local businesses.
Following the parade, there will be an event held at the Merchants Building at the fairgrounds to further honor the veterans. Jerry Elliott of 96.3 FM fame will emcee a short program that will include Director of Ohio Veterans Services and retired Col. Chip Tansill. Wendy’s chili, Starbucks coffee, cake from Costco, and cookies from Cheryl’s and Bob Evans have been donated to be served at the program.
At tonight’s First Friday event, members of the committee will be in front of Barley Hopsters where cards will be made to be given to the veterans on Veterans Day. Children who stop by and make a card will be entered into a drawing to win two tickets to The Strand.
“Line the streets and cheer them on,” Litke encourages Delaware residents. “They certainly deserve it, and if everyone would give a few moments out of their day to do this, it would make the event that much more special.”
Reach Dillon Davis at 740-413-0904. Follow him on Twitter @ddavis_gazette.