Rain or shine, the 43rd annual Portland Veterans Day Parade, formally known as the Ross Hollywood Veterans Day Parade, will bring marching bands, youth groups and military veterans to the neighborhood at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, November 11. The parade begins at Northeast 40th Ave. and Tillamook St. and travels east on Sandy Boulevard to 48th Ave., where a flag raising will be held. Everyone is welcome and can register to march in the parade to honor a veteran at www.veteransdaypdx.org.
This year’s grand marshal will be the USS Portland Commissioning Committee from the Portland Council of the Navy League. The new 684-foot amphibious transport ship is the third Navy ship to be named after the city and is scheduled to be commissioned here in Portland on April 21, 2018.
“This will be a great time for all of Portland to show their pride and come out to welcome the sailors that will show our city’s name around the world,” said Gary Piercy, chairman of the league’s executive committee, an organization that has been leading a campaign to have the ceremony in Portland. For more information or to donate to the cause, visit www.ussportlandlpd27.org.
Following the parade at 12:00 p.m., veterans are invited to a USO-style show at the German American Society hosted by the Hollywood Neighborhood Association, featuring entertainment by Tony Starlight and the 204th Army National Guard Band. Lunch will be provided to the first 250 attendees. The society is located at 5626 N.E. Alameda and plenty of parking will be available at Our Lady of Lavang Parish around the corner at 5404 N.E. Alameda.
Vernon E. Ross founded the parade in 1974. A veteran of both World War I and World War II, Ross collapsed while standing at the base of the Hollywood’s Veterans Memorial flagpole just prior to the parade’s start on November 11, 1983. He died later that evening. Dignity Memorial continues to honor Ross by sponsoring the parade each November.
Founded in 1946, Ross Hollywood Chapel is now part of the Dignity Memorial network of funeral, cremation and cemetery service providers. It is located at 4733 N.E. Thompson St. Veterans organizations will have informational tables in front of the chapel during the event and veterans are encouraged to stop by with questions or pick up literature.
As part of the Hollywood Booster’s emerging Clean and Safe Program, Hollywood businesses will be sprucing up the district and the areas surrounding their businesses on Friday, November 10 to prepare for the parade.
During the event, Rita Bhatia and Hearts For Portland (#hearts4PDX) plan to hang and distribute more than 500 hand-crafted hearts to honor the memory of our veterans and those who have served.
Organizers are looking for volunteers to work the morning of the parade to coordinate participants, answer questions and work with police to direct traffic. For more information, call 971-220-6428 or visit www.veteransdayparadepdx.org and www.hollywoodpdx.com.