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Local Memorial Day Parades and Ceremonies

Updated for 2021

May 26, 2021

See below for a list of local Memorial Day parades and ceremonies in 2021.

Teaching the meaning of Memorial Day to your children can be tricky. It's easy to get lost in the rush of picnics, parades and fun during what many see as the unofficial start to summer. However, communities all around the United States will hold celebrations to pay respect and remembrance to those who have died serving our country. These events can be a wonderful way to teach your children about the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Did you know that ...

  • The Grand Army of the Republic began decorating the graves of fallen service members with flowers in May 1868, which was then known as "Decoration Day".
  • In 1971 Congress declared Memorial Day a national holiday, to be observed on the last Monday in May, moving it from the static date of May 30, in order to create a 3-day weekend.
  • On the Thursday before Memorial Day, small American flags are placed at each of the 400,000+ gravestones at Arlington National Cemetery and other cemeteries nation-wide.
  • To encourage more people to observe Memorial Day, Congress passed the National Moment of Remembrance Act in 2000, which asks people to stop what they are doing at 3:00pm local time and observe a minute of silence to honor those who lost their lives defending the country.
  • On Memorial Day, the flag should first be raised to the top of the staff, then slowly lowered to half-staff, until noon when it should be raised to the top of the staff for the rest of the day.
  • Red poppies are considered the Memorial Day flower. There is a poem called "In Flanders Fields" that refers to the fields of poppies growing among soldiers' graves during the First World War.


"We come, not to mourn our dead soldiers, but to praise them." ~Francis A. Walker


For further reading, visit:

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

Memorial Day on Wikipedia

Arlington National Cemetery on Wikipedia


Local Memorial Day parades and ceremonies (all on Monday, May 31):

Acton

No parade in 2021.  A ceremony will take place at Woodlawn Cemetery, 104 Concord Rd at 11:15 AM.

Bedford

No parade in 2021. A ceremony will take place at Veterans Memorial Park at 11:30 AM.

Boxborough

A ceremony will take place at 9 AM at North Cemetery on Hill Rd and at 10 AM at South Cemetery at the corner of Burroughs and Stow Roads.

Carlisle

A ceremony will begin at 9:30 AM followed by a small parade.

Concord 

At 9 AM, a small procession of veterans, Concord Minutemen and others will march from Rideout Park on Laws Brook Rd to Sgt Kenneth Dunn Square at the intersection of Laws Brook Rd and Commonwealth Avenue for a flag-raising.

At 10:45 AM, another small procession will take place in Concord center, marching from St. Bernards Cemetery on Bedford St to Sleepy Hollow Cemetery to Monument Square for a ceremony and reading of names of fallen soldiers.

Lexington 

No parade or ceremonies in 2021.  A video of past ceremonies is available on LexMedia at 10 AM and 1 PM.

Lincoln 

No parade in 2021 but a ceremony will take place at Pierce House, 17 Weston Rd, at 9 AM.

Maynard 

No parade in 2021.  A ceremony will take place at Veterans Memorial Park, Summer St, at 11 AM.




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