Memorial Day

I have always enjoyed attending the Memorial Day gatherings at Town Hall. Before COVID, when I noticed the impressively large gathering was growing even larger, I began to wonder why we are limiting such a major celebratory event when so many in our community are inspired to come out to honor the fallen. At the very least (and I do not advocate doing only the very least), we need a new sound system for these events. The Star-Spangled Banner and speeches should be fully enjoyed by the masses with a quality sound system. Consulting with Tony Arrien (if willing), who always does a great job with technology at the Town Board meetings, could quickly lead to a considerable improvement.

Again, at the very least, additional seating should be provided. Unfortunately, I observed that two people who were part of the ceremony at the last in-person celebration had to be seated on the ground and attended to by our EMS after standing at length in the direct sun during the various speeches, etc. This cannot be an acceptable standard in the coming years as ceremonies begin again. The audience should also be provided with much more seating since the Memorial Day festivities are popular events for the older members of our community.

These two items should be completed without delay for this particular occasion, and I also believe that a committee of community members should investigate other ways that our town could further enjoy this and similar happenings. Let’s get the VFW and other groups involved with brainstorming expanded activities. Some talking points might be:

  • Has the ceremony outgrown its present location(s)? Currently, there are three separate ceremonies: 11 am, noon, and 1 pm at Town Hall, Lake Peekskill, and the VFW, respectively. Would it be better to have a united show of respect where all those in our various groups celebrate together?
  • Would the Town Park be a perfect place for this uniting of our community for one large ceremony rather than three separate events?
  • Might the parking be better accommodated at Town Park rather than long line-ups and walks for mature community members?
  • Could an educational event like a movie/lecture about a past armed conflict be added to expand the knowledge of young and old alike?
  • How about a Town Park picnic afterward for families and friends to enjoy?
  • A short walk from the Town Park to the VFW where I heard inspirational words this year?

These are merely talking points that a committee of our neighbors could discuss and expand upon if they wish. Let’s consider making our celebration bigger and better.

Ralph would like to hear from all of the community on this topic. Please click the button below to send him an email with your input.

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