History marches forward: Honoring Hatboro Parade to be held this Sunday on York Road

Matt Schickling, the Wire

The Greater Hatboro Chamber of Commerce has been holding events throughout the year to celebrate the borough’s 300th birthday, but some residents still do not know about the milestone.

That’s why organizers are making sure this weekend’s event is hard to miss. For only the second time in 10 years, Hatboro is hosting a summer parade, simply titled the “Honoring Hatboro Parade.”

Most residents attend or at least know about the Holiday Parade, usually held toward the end of November. The event is a community staple, drawing anywhere between 40,000 and 50,000 people to the York Road celebration. For that parade, over 100 groups and almost 3,000 individuals march each year, including community groups, elected officials, youth organizations and, of course, Santa Claus.

Tim Schultz, parade chairman for the last eight years, calls it the “biggest little parade in the Delaware Valley.”

For the Honoring Hatboro Parade, held Sunday, July 5, he’s expecting only a fraction of that turnout. That’s not a knock against the Tricentennial parade, though. The Holiday Parade draws from Hatboro and surrounding areas. The summer parade is distinctly recognizing Hatboro.

The event is expected to draw anywhere from 400 to 500 marchers, and, ideally, 5,000 to 10,000 spectators on the street.

The people marching, like Hatboro Mayor Norm Hawkes, state Rep. Tom Murt, state Sen. Stewart Greenleaf, Borough Council, Hatboro Police and fire departments from Hatboro, Ivyland and Warminster, all represent and serve the spirit of the Hatboro community. There will also be floats, youth and dance groups and other organizations.

Music will include the Hatboro-Horsham High School band, Tri-County Drum and Bugle Corps, a handful of Mummers and Paul BigBear. There is also expected to be a “special historical guest” anchoring the parade.

Kathy Salemno, of the chamber of commerce, said that children of all ages are invited to decorate their bikes, trikes, skateboards, wagons and strollers and join the parade. To do this, children should show up at the parking lot at Quig’s Pizza, 315 N York Road at 1 p.m. Participants will receive a coupon for a free Gelato from Nonno’s Bakery.

The parade will start at Daddypop’s, 232 N. York Road, at 2 p.m. and conclude at Lehman Methodist Church, 300 S. York Road, at around 4 p.m.

This parade represents one of many events the Hatboro Chamber has held throughout the year. For example, organizers paired the second annual Hatboro Restaurant Week with a well-attended art show at the historic Old Mill Inn back in February.

Other events like the Tricentennial Ball held at the Spring Mill Manor, Hatboro Community Day or the Revolutionary War Reenactment held in June at Pennypack Elementary School brought together the community in different ways.

“We’ve had great events thus far,” Schultz said. “It’s going to build as the year goes on and more people get aware.”

There will be more events in the coming months. The Chamber is organizing Throwback Cruise Night on Aug. 14, a Veterans Day celebration and the annual Moonlight Memories Car Show, set for July 25.
For information, visit the Greater Hatboro Chamber of Commerce Facebook page at www.facebook.com/HatboroChamberOfCommerce?fref=ts.