The weekend forecast calls for sunny skies and seasonably cool temperatures, perfect weather for Memorial Day parades, and there will be many to choose from in Erie and Niagara counties.
The biggest is the Kenmore Memorial Day Parade, which steps off at 11 a.m. Monday in the Town of Tonawanda and proceeds down Delaware Avenue to Lincoln Boulevard, ending at Elm- wood Avenue.
Sponsored by Milton J. Brounshidle Post 205, American Legion, and Harry E. Crosby Post 2472, Veterans of Foreign Wars, it features more than 60 bands, service organizations, fire departments and dance groups.
While that may be the biggest of the weekend’s events, there also will be lots of others to choose from.
The first parade of the weekend takes place in Niagara Falls at 11 a.m. at the City Market, 19th Street and Pine Avenue, and proceeds up Pine to Veterans Park in Hyde Park at Pine and Robbins Drive.
Also on Saturday, a special event titled “Soldiers Through the Ages” will highlight the region’s military history from the 17th to the 20th centuries at Old Fort Niagara in Youngstown.
Activities begin at 10 a.m. with a colors ceremony by the Lewiston-Porter High School Air Force Junior ROTC. During the ceremony, the fort’s replica of its 24-by-28-foot 1812 flag will be raised in commemoration of the American attack on Fort George across the Niagara River on May 25, 1813. At 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, the fort will offer an 1812 bicentennial tour focusing on the capture of Fort George.
A parade in Blasdell begins at 1 p.m. in front of Firemen’s Park, 205 Lake Ave., and ends at Blasdell Library on Madison Avenue with a brief ceremony. The Blasdell Volunteer Fire Department will serve refreshments at Thomas E. Tehan Post 1449, American Legion, 2075 Electric Ave., following the dedication.
Marilla’s parade begins in the cemetery on Two Rod Road at 1 p.m. and ends at the Veterans Memorial. Hot dogs will be served at a reception following a ceremony at the memorial.
The Sons & Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War will hold their annual ceremony with songs, a military salute and placement of a wreath at 1 p.m. at the GAR Monument in Section 14 of Forest Lawn to honor Civil War veterans buried there.
Brian G. Stiller, medical center director for VA Western New York Healthcare System, will be the keynote speaker at the Memorial Day ceremony at 2 p.m. at Evans Town Hall, 8787 Erie Road, Angola. Town Supervisor Keith Dash will present Evans Veteran of the Year Awards to William Houston and Augustine Pingnatore.
Four parades step off at 9 a.m. Monday.
In Collins Center, the procession begins at Main Street and Collins Center Zoar Road, and continues on Main to the cemetery, where an American Legion ceremony will follow.
Orchard Park’s parade starts at Orchard Park Library, 4570 S. Buffalo St., and marches to the Four Corners.
Lancaster holds a memorial service at 9 a.m. in Lake Avenue Veterans Park, followed by a parade from the park along Lake Avenue, School Street, Pleasant Avenue and Central Avenue to Lancaster Town Hall.
In Elma, a parade sponsored by the Elma Kiwanis Club will start at Elma Library at Rice and Bowen roads, proceeding up Bowen to the Veterans Memorial in front of Town Hall, where a commemorative service will be held.
In Springville, the Town of Concord parade begins at 10 a.m. on North Buffalo Street and proceeds to Fiddler’s Green Park, where a wreath will be placed at the monument, then along Franklin Street and Main Street to Maplewood Cemetery, where there will be a service at the Mound.
The West Seneca parade steps off at 10:30 a.m. from Southgate Plaza and proceeds up Union Road to Legion Drive.
The annual parade in Hamburg steps off at 10:30 a.m. from the street behind Pleasant Ave- nue School, marching on Pleasant and Buffalo, Main, Center and Union streets to the bandstand in Memorial Park, where a short program will follow.
In Clarence, the parade begins at 11 a.m. from Clarence High School, Main Street and Gunnville Road, and ends at Clarence Town Park, 10450 Main St. Ceremonies in the park will follow.
State Sen. Tim Kennedy, D-Buffalo, will be the speaker at Memorial Day services at South Buffalo Post 721, American Legion, 136 Cazenovia Ave., at 11 a.m. A brunch of hot dogs, hamburgers and salad will follow.
Youngstown Post 313, Veterans of Foreign Wars, will hold a Memorial Day ceremony at 11 a.m. in the Fort Niagara War of 1812 Cemetery. After the ceremony, a reception and open house will be held at the post at 434 Third St. During the reception, the post will hold a Disposal Ceremony for Unserviceable Flags. The public is invited to bring worn-out flags for disposal.
Hamburg Moose Lodge 992 will hold its 23rd annual Memorial Day flag-burning ceremony at noon at the club at 45 Church St. The public is invited to bring old and tattered American flags for proper disposal. A reception with hot dogs and beverages will follow.
Wales will hold a parade and memorial service beginning at noon. The parade will line up at Hunters Creek Road and Route 20A and proceed down Big Tree Road to the Veterans Memorial next to the Community Center and Town Hall, 12345 Big Tree Road.
The Williamsville/Amherst parade will be held at 2 p.m., originating from Williamsville South High School, 5950 Main St., and proceeding down Main to Los Robles Street.
Those who died in our nation’s service will be remembered in a variety of Memorial Day ceremonies in area cemeteries over the weekend.
A special ceremony to honor veterans buried in the Field of Valor at Lakeside Cemetery, 4810 Camp Road, Hamburg, will be held at 9:30 a.m. Saturday. Leading the ceremony will be Hamburg Township Post 1419, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and Cub Scout Packs 143 and 592.
An adaptation of a 1902 service for the Grand Army of the Republic will be offered at 10 a.m. Saturday at the grave of Civil War soldier Jacob Smith in historic Concordia Cemetery, 438 Walden Ave., Buffalo. Leading the service will be members of Col. John B. Weber Camp 44, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.
St. Matthew’s Cemetery, 180 Old French Road, West Seneca, will host two Memorial Day ceremonies over the weekend.
A special ceremony led by Pvt. Leonard Post Jr. Post 6251, Veterans of Foreign Wars, will be held at 1 p.m. Sunday at the cemetery’s Veterans Plaza. At 9 a.m. Monday, the Town of West Seneca Veterans Committee will hold a special wreath-laying ceremony in the Field of Valor. Reservations are preferred for both ceremonies. Call 822-1960.
The Erie County American Legion will be in Forest Lawn on Monday morning for its annual ceremony to honor and salute veterans. At 8:30 a.m., flags will be placed on the graves of veterans in the Field of Valor and the cemetery’s American Legion section. At 9 a.m., the ceremony will be held in front of the American Legion Memorial Monument in the Veterans Section, near the Main Street gates.
Catholic cemeteries in Erie and Niagara counties will join the national Catholic Cemetery Conference observance, “Serving God and Country: A Memorial Day Salute to Our Heroes.” Messages can be placed on special tribute boards in all the cemeteries.
Diocesan priests, including three who served as military chaplains, will offer special Memorial Day Masses.
Masses are scheduled at 10 a.m. Saturday in Mount Olivet Cemetery, Town of Tonawanda, led by Monsignor Francis Weldgen; Holy Cross Cemetery, Lackawanna, led by Monsignor James Campbell (Marine Corps); Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Cheektowaga, led by the Rev. John Mack (Air Force); and Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Lewiston, led by the Rev. Michael Zuffoletto (Navy).
At 10 a.m. Monday, the Rev. James Waite will offer Mass at Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Lockport.