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Chesterfield celebrates Independence Day with parade

  • Members of the Hampshire County Riding Club ride in the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Nathaniel Judd, 1, Jacob Reinke, 7, and Henry Judd, 6, play with soap bubbles while waiting for the start of the parade. The Judds are from Goshen; Reinke lives in Oxford. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Faith Stanisewski, 4, and Brooke Stanisewski, 6, of Hatfield, play with soap bubbles while waiting for the start of the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday, July 4, 2018. Dan Burgielewicz, of Easthampton, is in the background. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Anona Robertson-Goldberg, of Chesterfield, walks in the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield on Wednesday. Her attire earned her a first place in the “most original” category. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Hampshire County Sheriff Patrick Cahillane, center, waves as he walks in the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday, July 4, 2018. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • State Rep. Stephen Kulik waves as he walks in the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield on Wednesday. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Irene Lladonosa, left, of Barcelona, Spain, and Katarina Michalikova, who lives in Slovakia, applaud at the start of the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday, July 4, 2018. They are secondary school teachers and are taking a five-week course at Amherst College. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Trevor the Games Man walks on stilts. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Kim Lyons-Snape, left, Rory Snape, 5, and Keith Snape, of Chesterfield, watch as a classic Ford passes during the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday, July 4, 2018. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • The Florence Community Band performs during the parade. GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Members of the Holyoke Caledonian Pipe Band perform during the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday, July 4, 2018. —GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • A group of women from the Worthington Gardeners walk in the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday, July 4, 2018. —GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • The Roberts family of Bofat Hill Farm in Chesterfield ride in the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday, July 4, 2018. —GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS

  • Ed Roberts drives his 1932 Ford Coupe in the 71st annual Fourth of July parade in Chesterfield, Wednesday, July 4, 2018 as Rus Peotter, right, announces. Leslie Kellogg is beside Peotter. —GAZETTE STAFF/JERREY ROBERTS



For the Gazette
Wednesday, July 04, 2018

CHESTERFIELD — People from the Hilltowns and beyond gathered along South Street and Main Road in Chesterfield Wednesday to celebrate Independence Day during the town’s 71st annual Fourth of July parade.

It was clearly a beloved tradition as people marching in the parade called out to friends and neighbors watching from the shaded sides of the road.

One woman from the Hampshire County Riding Club atop a brown horse with red, white and blue bows in its hair belted out, “I can’t believe how big you guys have gotten!” to two children as music from the Florence Community Band’s float filled the air.

Among those marching in the parade were several local fire departments, Holyoke’s Caledonian Pipe Band, the Hilltown Misfits 4-H club and the Worthington Gardeners. Other contingents included the Hampshire Lodge of Masons, Florence Bank, Trevor “The Games Man” on stilts, The Hilltown Sleddogs and Uncle Sam cruising on a Segway.

Several candidates for statewide elected offices also used the parade as an opportunity to raise awareness of their campaigns.

Ed Severance, a parade organizer, said that with the lingering heat wave, a misting tent had been set up on the parade route for the first time.

“If anyone gets too hot, they can go in there and cool down,” he said amid the sweltering heat.

There was also a group of women and girls from Chesterfield who marched with a banner that read “Women’s rights are human rights.” Angel Williams, who moved to Chesterfield last year, said that the women were not from a particular organization, but just wanted to spread their message.

“We had a lot of fun,” Williams said after marching. “All ages were represented. The littlest ones held the banner in front and in the back we had signs that said ‘Not done yet.’”

Taking in the parade were regulars Wayne and Fran Thibault of Northampton, who found a shady spot near the beginning of the route.

“We’ve been coming for several years now,” Fran Thibault said. “It’s a great small-town parade.”

And it wasn’t only Hampshire County residents that came to Chesterfield to celebrate. Samantha Turner and her 2-year-old daughter, Anastasia, traveled from Oklahoma to be with family from Huntington on the Fourth of July.

“Anastasia liked the bagpipes and fire trucks most,” Turner said. “We had a really nice time.”

The Fourth of July celebration continued on after the parade with a chicken barbecue, a magic show and face painting in the park, as well as a classic car show, live music in the town offices parking lot, and family softball nearby.