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Veterans Day events in the Pioneer Valley

  • Justin Vezina, of Florence at the Veterans day ceremony last year in Northampton. GAZETTE FILE PHOTO


Friday, November 09, 2018
Northampton breakfast and annual ceremony

NORTHAMPTON — On Saturday, the Veterans Council of Northampton and Central Hampshire Veterans’ Services will gather for its Annual Salute to Veterans Breakfast at 9 a.m.at the Elks #997 Lodge, 17 Spring St. in Florence. The public is invited. Tickets are $10 for non-veterans and are free for all veterans.

Ticket must be obtained in advance at any of the following locations: the Florence VFW Post 8006, the Northampton American Legion Post 28 in Bay State Village, the Florence Elks Lodge #997, the Northampton World War II Club, or at the Northampton Central Hampshire Veterans’ Services.

On Sunday, the city’s annual Veterans Day ceremony will be held at Pulaski Park at 11 a.m. Jennifer Shea, a Northampton resident and volunteer with the Honor Flight program, will speak at the ceremony. Honor Flight is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to transport veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit war memorials.

Hatfield ceremony

HATFIELD — A Veterans Day ceremony will be held on Sunday at 11 a.m. in front of Town Hall at 59 Main St.

Southampton breakfast  

SOUTHAMPTON — A breakfast and assembly will be held on Friday, November 9 at 9:30 a.m. at William E. Norris School.

Veterans with up to two guests are invited to join for breakfast.

South Hadley commemoration

SOUTH HADLEY — The town will commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I with a series of events throughout the morning on Sunday at Michael E. Smith Middle School.

Ceremonies will begin at 10:15 a.m. with coffee and donuts followed by a musical prelude by the Michael E. Smith Middle School band and chorus at 10:45 a.m.

At 11 a.m., bells will be rung 21 times across the nation to honor the 116,516 American men and women who died in World War I, eight of whom were from South Hadley. The official ceremony will commence shortly after, including a wreath laying.

The town’s entire ceremony will be held indoors and not at Town Hall like in previous years.

Belchertown ceremonies

BELCHERTOWN — Veteran’s Day ceremonies in Belchertown will be held at Belchertown High School auditorium at 9:00 a.m, followed by the town ceremony at 9:30 a.m. at the Town Common. Raymond Janke, Belchertown’s Veterans’ Agent, will be the guest speaker at the Sunday, Nov. 11 events.

All residents of Belchertown and neighboring communities are encouraged to attend.

Amherst ceremonies

AMHERST — Amherst commemorates the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day on Sunday at 11 a.m. at the flagpole at the North Common in front of Town Hall. The ceremony will include a raising and lowering of the flag, guest speaker and retired U.S. Air Force Col. Terry Fenstad and the ringing of the Grace Episcopal Church bells 21 times. 

In the case of inclement weather, the flag ceremony will still be held, but the speeches will be held at the VFW or the Bangs Center.

Free parking for veterans

There will be free parking at all state parks on Veterans Day (Sunday, Nov. 11), the Baker-Polito administration announced this week. There are numerous veteran memorials and military monuments within the state parks system.

Easthampton ceremonies

EASTHAMPTON — On Sunday, A firing squad detail will assemble at the American Legion Post 224 on Pleasant St. at 10 a.m. A delegation from VFW Post 3422 and the American Legion Post 224 will proceed to the Town Hall Civil War monument, where there will be a prayer, laying of a memorial wreath, rifle salute and the playing of Taps. The delegation will then proceed to the Brookside Cemetery veterans monument and repeat the ceremony.

At 11 a.m., the delegation will again perform the ceremony at monuments at the Emily Williston Memorial Library. The main ceremonies will be held at the American Legion Post at 11:30 a.m. that will included a prayer, guest speaker, award presentations and music performed by the Easthampton High School Band.