CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP)–Memorial Day is a national day of mourning created to honor those in the United State Military who died in defense of our country. Traditionally, communities commemorate the day with parades, ceremonies and flagging of veterans graves.
Below is a listing of Memorial Day events happening in western Massachusetts.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 25:
AGAWAM– 8:30am-11am, Flagging of Graves at Massachusetts Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery, 1390 Main Street, Agawam.
WEST SPRINGFIELD- 9am, VFW Post 6714 will be grave flagging at Paucatuck, Ashleyville, Union, and the White Church cemeteries. Volunteers meet behind Powers Cafe at 76 Westfield St, and will break into groups to flag around 1,000 graves. Rain date is May 26.
FRIDAY, MAY 27:
SOUTH HADLEY– 9am, Veteran Breakfast and ceremony, South Hadley Council on Aging, 45 Dayton Street
SPRINGFIELD– Noon, Ceremony on City Hall steps with wreath laying at Veterans Memorial across the street.
SUNDERLAND– 6pm, Memorial Day Parade. Go to the town’s website for details.
SATURDAY, MAY 28:
WEST SPRINGFIELD-9am, Flagging of the Graves at St. Thomas Cemetery, 420 Kings Highway, West Springfield of over 1,500 graves.
SUNDAY, MAY 29:
WILBRAHAM– 11am, Crane Park Veteran Memorial across from the intersection of Springfield Street & Main Street.
BRIMFIELD- 2pm, Parade at the Town Common
HADLEY-2pm- Parade steps off from American Legion, 162 Russell Street and heads west on Route 9 and turns right up West Street. A brief ceremony will be held around the West St. Common to the General Hooker Monument. For information on pre-parade ceremonies at Hadley cemeteries, go to the town’s website.
CHICOPEE-7pm, Candlelight ceremony at the Vietnam Veterans’ Plaza on Chicopee Street.
MONDAY, MAY 30:
AGAWAM- 7am, short ceremony at Vietnam Veterans Bridge, Front Street. 10am, Parade begins at Agawam Middle School and Town Hall, moves down Main Street to Veterans’ Green where a ceremony will be held. Ceremony to move to Junior High School auditorium in case of rain.
LONGMEADOW– 9am, Ceremony on Town Green, no parade.
ASHFIELD- 10am, Parade begins at Town Common, moved to Plain Cemetery on Baptist Corner Road for ceremony.
AMHERST- 9am, Parade begins at Amherst Town Common, ends with a ceremony at War Memorial Pool on Triangle Street.
GREENFIELD– 10am, Parade begins at Greenfield Middle School, ends with ceremony at the Veterans Mall on Main Street.
HOLYOKE-10am, Memorial Day ceremony at War Memorial Building, 310 Appleton Street
LUDLOW- 10am, Parade begins at the corner of Winsor and Worcester Streets, ending with a ceremony at Veterans’ Memorial Gazebo on East Street.
PITTSFIELD– 10AM, Parade leaves City Hall and marches up North Street then on to Wahconah Street, ending at Pittsfield Cemetery for a ceremony.
SOUTHWICK– 10am, Parade will step off at 552 College Highway and proceed to the war memorial at 488 College Highway. Following the ceremony wreaths will be laid at the old and new cemeteries on College Highway. A reception will be held at Post 338, 46 Powder Mill Road, at the conclusion of all ceremonies.
SPRINGFIELD– 10am, Ceremony at St. Michael’s Cemetery, 1601 State Street.
WESTFIELD– 10am, Parade leaves Mestek at 260 North Elm Street, and moves south down North Elm Street, continuing across the Great River Bridge onto Elm Street, continuing south to Broad Street, turning right at the intersection of Broad Street and West Silver Street to Parker Memorial Park for the Memorial Day ceremony at 11AM. If poor weather cancels the parade, the ceremony will be moved indoors to the Westfield South Middle School Auditorium beginning at 11:00AM.
NORTHAMPTON (Florence)– 10:10am, Parade will step off from Trinity Row and march to the Park Street Cemetery where a ceremony will be held.
EASTHAMPTON– 10:30am, Parade will step off from the Community Center on Clark Street by way of Cottage Street, move down Union Street, take a right on to Main Street, around Pulaski Park, and back to the Emily Williston Library for a full ceremony.
EAST LONGMEADOW– 10:30am, participants assemble in the high school parking lot. Marchers will begin at 10:50 a.m. and move to the high school flag pole area where a new flag is to be raised. A formal program inside the school will immediately follow. In the case of rain, the entire ceremony is to be hosted inside of the high school auditorium.
SOUTH HADLEY- 10:30am, Memorial Day ceremony at South Hadley High School auditorium
CHICOPEE– 11am, Ceremony at Veterans Memorial Plaza, 650 Front Street in front of 1st Sgt. Kevin Dupont Middle School. No parade.
WEST SPRINGFIELD– 7am, short ceremony at Vietnam Veterans Bridge, Front Street. 11am, full Memorial Day Ceremony program in front of Town Hall, 26 Central Street.
Massachusetts Veterans Memorial Cemetery-1pm, Ceremony at cemetery,1390 Main Street, Agawam.
WARE– 1pm, Parade begins at American Legion Post 123 on Maple Street and moves to Veterans Park at 101 Main Street, ending with a ceremony.