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Thousands View Old Home Week Parade

10-Day Celebration Officially Opened

From the August 31, 1951 Emmitsburg Chronicle ...

Staid Old Emmitsburg turned out in grandiose style last night as the Old Home Week parade officially opened festivities for the 10-day celebration. Good weather prevailing, the largest crowd believed ever assembled here, met the line of marchers with enthusiasm on a scale never before displayed here. It was truly magnificent panorama as the parade threaded its way over the main thoroughfares and passed the magnificently-decorated houses and places of business. The grand acclaim that was registered portended the success of the affair.

Preceding the parade was the coronation of the Queen of Old Home Week, Miss Mary Fiery, by Mayor Thornton W. Rodgers. This interesting ceremony was performed on the Square.

Following the parade and coronation, Mayor Rodgers made the official welcoming address on the carnival grounds. Last Night's activities were a band concert by the Hagerstown Civic Band and the awarding of prizes to the winners of the different parade classification.

Last night’s activities were only the beginning of the huge celebration being sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce and the Memorial Hall Association, co-sponsored by the twenty-one other organization and churches. The whole program is studded with interesting and entertaining events scattered over the 10 days of festivities which included open-house visits to both Mt. Saint Marys and St. Joseph’s colleges and the grave of Samuel Emmit, founder of Emmitsburg. [Historical Correction Note]

A 6 o’clock tonight festivities will resume for the second night. On the carnival grounds plenty of entertainment is in store for the throng expected and rides of all types are available for the kiddies. General chairman for the affair is Bernard H. Boyle, who has announced that tonight’s gigantic fireworks will be displayed at 8:30 pm.

From all indications former residents of town have begun infiltrate and by the weekend the town is expected to flood with former residents and natives, many of whom have not been here since the last Old Home Week in 1909 - 42 years ago.

1909 Old Home week parade

Keen interest is being evinced in the bicycle parade and race to be held Saturday, all indications practically every bicycle owner in town will participate in the parade or race. Another interesting event, the turtle races, will be promoted on Monday - the committee in charge expected at least 20 entries.

Other highlights of the celebration are: Bonfire Saturday night, sponsored by the Vigilant Hose Company; Memorial Service Sunday in the churches; Guest speaker Sunday Evening; Turtle races and water Festival Monday; Beef Barbecue Tuesday; Banc Concert Wednesday; Crazy Daze, all local talent show, Thursday and Friday nights and Saturday, the Pet Parade.

Results of the coming baby contest will be public next week and place cards bearing photographs of the entrants have been placed in most stores.

Attracting much attention are the window displays of the town. Practically every busies house has a display. Many interesting and valuable items have been exhibited in the windows.

If you have any photos, personal memories, or stories from relatives
about the 1909 or 1951 Old Week Celebrations? If so we would love
to hear from you!  Please drop us a line at history@emmitsburg.net

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