The pandemic has lead to many event postponements and cancellations, from Easter egg hunts to Independence Day fireworks.
But members of Middlesex Township Volunteer Fire Company last week discussed the idea of offering residents something to look forward to this summer. It boiled down to one big question, according to social member Melissa Bitzer.
“What could we do to continue to try to uplift our community?” Bitzer, whose firefighter husband is company vice president, asked.
The idea for a community-oriented parade on July 4 — open to anyone with a vehicle — was born.
Bitzer said the fire company traditionally participates in Saxonburg's Fourth of July event. With that being canceled this year, an opportunity to try something new emerged.
“(We) just want something for people to look forward to,” Bitzer said. “Just to show them that the Fourth of July still goes on.”
The event is similar to one that occurred this spring, when several municipalities joined forces to have a multiday Easter parade through area communities.
“I would like it to be big,” Bitzer said. “I've messaged probably 40 people.”
Bitzer said at the moment, the parade is slated just for Middlesex Township and should also include township police.
But Bitzer is opening it up to other municipal first responder companies, as well as local businesses and community members. People who want to be part of the parade can decorate their vehicles or come as they are.
The only major change to normal parade procedure — implemented because of pandemic concerns — will be the element of drivers tossing candy or toys to crowds.
“We're asking that that not be done,” Bitzer said.
The parade route and other details are being finalized. More information will be released on the Middlesex Township fire department website and community Facebook groups as it becomes available. Those interested in being part of the parade or learning more should call Bitzer at 724-272-5393.