ROCKINGHAM —There will be a variety of events going on throughout the day and into the evening hours Saturday to honor and remember veterans.
Things kick off at 11 a.m. with a Veterans Day service, presented by American Legion Post 147, at Veterans Memorial Park, across from Rockingham VFW Post 4203.
American Legion State Commander Evan Thompson is scheduled as the guest speaker. Following the service, a free lunch of hot dogs and hamburgers will be served to those in attendance.
Celebrations continue at 1 p.m. in Harrington Square with a hot dog stand, a kids jumping zone and an appearance by Smokey Bear at his colleagues with the N.C. Forest Service. At the same time, local country and classic rock band Black Powder will be performing.
The opening ceremony for the third annual Veterans Day Parade will begin on the steps of the old courthouse at 3 p.m., with Rockingham City Council member Denise Sullivan, Richmond Senior High School Army JROTC instructor Lt. Col. Jon Ring and Congressman-elect Mark Harris slated as speakers.
AMVETS POST 316 will end the ceremony with a 21-gun salute and the playing of Taps.
More than 50 floats will be a part of the Veterans Day Parade, and will line up in the Department of Social Services parking lot beginning at 1 p.m., according to organizer Robin Roberts, president of VFW Post 4203 Auxiliary. The floats will include entries representing all wars from World War I through the Iraq War, as well as Hospice, the American Legion, VFW, the Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts, local cheerleader squads, Taekwondo performers, and local National Special Olympics winner Dawn Grooms.
The parade will make its way from the DSS parking lot down Franklin Street past the courthouse and police station, taking a left at Rockingham First United Methodist Church and proceeding up Washington Street past Re/Max Southern Realty, where realtor Jamie Moss will have a large white tree in the courtyard decorated in a patriotic theme with American flags available for those attending the parade.
Former state senator and Rockingham mayor Gene McLaurin will also be distributing flags along the parade route.
Continuing through Harrington Square, past the newly renovated fountain, the parade will finish up at the DSS parking lot.
The third annual Rockin’ for Veterans will conclude the day’s events back at the VFW post.
The concert, rescheduled due to weather, begins at 5 p.m. and will feature four local bands — Safety Committee, Simple Things, August Burning and the Ponder Project — with Pearce Productions handling the sound.
Donations of $10 will be accepted at the door, with all proceeds going to local and deployed troops.