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Patriotic Memorial Day Events in Downtown Rockford

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2019 Memorial Day Parade, Memorial Day Ceremony and Sinking of the Ship Ceremony

Memorial Day Monday May 27, 2019 marks the 151th anniversary of General John Logan’s general order # 11 which created “Decoration Day," designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country. This year’s Memorial Day events will include:

The Parade, a Rockford tradition since 1870, which will honor Gold Star Families and feature Gold Star Mother Angie White, Area Veterans Organizations, school bands, Police and Fire Departments.

A Memorial Day Ceremony immediately following the parade on the Wyman St. side of Veterans Memorial Hall and Museum

The annual Navy Club Ship #1’s Sinking of the Ship ceremony, immediately following the Memorial Day Ceremony at Veterans Memorial Hall and Museum on the Rock River at the Downtown Rockford Public Library's former site.
Parade Route: All parade units will line up near the intersection of 7th St. and 6th Ave. The parade will proceed at 9 a.m. north on 7th St. to Charles St. and Charles St. to State St. Units will then travel west on State St.nd turn north on Wyman St., proceeding north to Beattie Park where the parade will end. Unit review and commentary will be in front of Memorial Hall. 

Once the parade has ended at approximately 10:30 AM, N. Wyman St between Mulberry St and Jefferson St will remain closed and the Memorial Day Program will begin. The program will include comments from Winnebago County Veterans Association’s Commander Nancy Clark, Rockford’s third ward Alderman Chad Tuneberg, City of Rockford Mayor Thomas McNamara and Winnebago County Board Chairman Frank Haney. The ceremony will conclude with a Memorial Dove release. Also this year, with an generous donation from ACE Hardware and VFW post’s 342 and 5149, there will be two hundred flags placed on the grounds of Veterans Memorial Hall that will be given to those in attendance to decorate a Veteran's grave.

The Memorial Day activities will continue with the annual riverside Sinking of the Ship ceremony including a wreath presentation, a 21 gun salute by the Rockford Detachment Marine Corp League, the sinking of the ship presented by the Navy Club Ship #1 on the river.

Subarea:Rockford Downtown

Veterans Memorial Hall and Museum - 211 N. Main St., Rockford, IL 61101 - From I-90 and E. State St. (US Business 20): west 6.5 miles on Business 20, which becomes one-way as Jefferson St., to Wyman (first street after the bridge over Rock River). Turn left (south) on Wyman to Mulberry. From I-39: west on US 20 Bypass to IL 2 (S. Main). Go north on IL 2 to the downtown area. Park in lots at Wyman and Mulberry or along the Rock River behind the Rockford Public Library across Wyman. Entrances to Memorial Hall are on Wyman and on N. Main. Free parking in the lot on the south side at Mulberry and Wyman.

Patriotic Memorial Day Events in Downtown Rockford