By Maralisa Marra
Since 2008, the Shinnston Lions Club has organized and brought Shinnston the Veterans Day parade on Nov. 11 at 11 a.m. every year.
Lions Club President Dave Minor said, “We are asking people to participate in the parade to celebrate our veterans–people with floats or groups, small groups of people, or anybody that wants to get in there to help honor the veterans.”
He also said that he hopes for the local businesses to participate in the parade.
After the parade, the Lions Club, in conjunction with the American Legion Ladies Auxiliary, will be hosting a luncheon to honor the parade marshals at the American Legion at 76 Bridge St. around noon. Minor said the luncheon is free and open to the public.
When the Shinnston Lions Club took over organizing the parade years ago, they set out to enhance the event. “The Lions Club decided to take it over and try to put the parade on because we thought it was important enough to keep it going,” Minor added.
“We’re proud to do it,” Minor said.
Minor also said, “We like to have two to three parade marshals every year…so that we can catch up on all the guys over the past years that never had the opportunity to be honored for their service.”
He said they like to ask some of the older veterans first to ensure they are honored for their service and included in the parade.
“We try to make all of our parade marshals representative of the military branch and the job that they did in the military,” Minor said.
Minor and the Shinnston Lions Club, as well as the American Legion, are determined to honor veterans and their service not only on Veterans Day and in the parade but all year long, too.
According to the Society of Human Resource Management website, “Currently, only five states—Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Oregon and Tennessee—require private employers to provide time off to veterans on Veterans Day, observed annually in the United States on Nov. 11.”
The Federal Labor Standards Act does not require private employers to give employees time off for the holiday, although employers may elect to do so.
Despite the above information, the Lions Club finds utmost importance in observing the holiday and honoring the service of our veterans which is why they continue to carry on the tradition of the Shinnston Veterans Day parade, according to Minor.
If interested in participating in the parade, there is still time to do so. Contact Minor at 304-844-6078 for more information.
If not participating in the line-up, be sure to catch the annual parade downtown on Veterans Day Nov. 11 at 11 a.m.
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