BURNT HILLS: The Route 50 corridor will once again be decked out in red, white and blue as residents celebrate the 15th annual Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake Community Flag Day Parade on Thursday, June 9, 2016. [FLYER]
Six bands and at least 80 businesses, clubs, fire companies, not-for-profits, teams, and scout troops are expected to march in the parade.
Starting at 6:40 pm, approximately two miles of Route 50 will be closed to all traffic between Forest Road on the north and High Mills/Kingsbury Roads on the south.
Following a One Mile Road Race along the parade route at 6:50 pm, the parade will step off at 7:00 pm. Marchers will head south on Route 50, starting from Kingsley Road and ending at Country Acres.
The parade is organized each year by the BH-BL Business & Professional Association. As usual, a special viewing area for those with handicapped parking permits will be in front of Burnt Hills Optical on Route 50.
A number of floats in this year’s parade will honor the fact that this is the 100th anniversary of the founding of the BH-BL school district. Some floats will portray events from a specific decade of the centennial.
Grand Marshals for this year’s parade are four former or future BH-BL graduates, selected to represent the school district's past, present and future. They will be riding in convertibles at the beginning of the parade.
Beverly Oudt, member of the BH-BL Class of 1949, is known for playing the school Alma Mater on the piano and for her years as a school staff member in the business office. Ginny Mottola has been historian of the BH-BL Class of 1951. A long-time Spartan supporter, she wrote a history of the BH-BL sports program and will be inducted into the BH-BL Hall of Fame on June 11. Class of 2016 member Casey Doherty will be graduating later this month and is currently serving as a first-ever student member of the BH-BL Board of Education.
Lastly, though he is only four years old, Zane Waylett will be a Grand Marshal representing the youngest Spartans in the community. Zane attended many meetings and was an active member (with his mom’s help) of the committee that just built a new playground at Stevens Elementary, where he will attend kindergarten this fall. Zane will be a member of the Class of 2029.
New attractions this year will include a pause at the start of the parade for the Burnt Hills Oratorio to perform the Star Spangled Banner when the Color Guard passes the Burnt Hills Fire Station. Professional DJ Cap Capello will also be on hand this year to announce the groups in the parade and provide commentary.
More than 80 community businesses, organizations and individuals made donations to cover the roughly $17,000 cost of this year’s parade and fireworks, which is a record number of contributors. According to BPA treasurer Jeanette Borthwick, the local connection was an important factor with donors and at least 30 of the contributing businesses are owned by BH-BL graduates.
Major sponsors donating $500 or more each include: the Town of Ballston, Terry Morris Ford, Curtis Industrial Park, Ballston Spa National Bank, BH-BL Teachers Association, Gil’s Garage, Villago Ristorante, and Townley & Wheeler Funeral Home.
The very popular post-parade fireworks will be held on the athletic fields behind the O'Rourke Middle School at 173 Lakehill Road at dusk or approximately 9:15 pm. Parking at the middle school is limited to areas on the east and west sides of the building. Only those with a handicapped permit may park behind the school.