Celebrating 65 Years of Tradition
The Largest and Most Prestigious Labor Day Parade in New England
In 1952, Mayor, Romeo J. Gadbois instituted the first annual Marlborough Labor Day Parade as a way to brighten the lives of those in the Marlborough communities. The nation, including the Marlborough community, was recovering from WWII and bracing for the effects of the Korean War. The first parade, managed by Louis Ghiloni, the city’s first Recreation Director, consisted of 12 marching units. In the 65 years that have followed, the parade has grown to be a premier city event with an impressive variety of bands, floats, and entertainers.
Historically a theme is chosen for each parade. This year’s theme is Marlborough – Where Tradition and Economic Vitality Meet! This theme was chosen in celebration of Marlborough’s rich traditions and its continued economic growth, which is due in large part to the city’s ideal proximity to I-495, I-290, I-90, and Routes 9, 20, and 85. These celebrated characteristics make Marlborough a great place to live and the perfect city for businesses to thrive.
The success of the parade is due in large part to community support. The majority of the cost is covered by donations from private, commercial, corporate, and individual community members. The parade is a collaborative effort and provides the City of Marlborough with a platform to showcase all that it offers and the city’s shared community pride.
Some of the parade’s donors choose to directly participate in the parade and others choose to sponsor community organizations such as the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, a School Association or School and athletic groups. Some participants provide music, march, create memorable floats, and others watch and cheer from the sidelines of the 1.7 mile route. (Parade begins at Pleasant and Lincoln Streets and proceeds west onto Lincoln Street, south onto Broad Street, east onto West main Street and continues onto Main Street, turns south on Maple Street and ends at the intersection of Route 85- Bolton Street)
Volunteering is another large component of the event. Planning and keeping this annual event in motion involves the energy of many community members. Over the years there have been so many individuals who have lent their time and have contributed to the success and growth of this wonderful tradition.
Photos on this website have been supplied by WMCT-TV.