Thanks to widespread community support, after several years with no Independence Day celebration. Now it's about maintaining it.
Parade committee chairman Dave Schill—who along with several other dedicated Moorestonians helped resuscitate the parade—said this year's parade will be bigger than last year's, with about 51 different groups participating, including the Moorestown Garden Club, STEM (Save The Environment of Moorestown), the , , and , along with a number of out-of-towners, such as Deborah Heart and Lung Center, Beck's Band (a Civil War-themed band) and the Polish American String Band.
"(The list) just goes on and on and on," Schill said.
That's not to mention the dozens of residents who will surely show up on parade day looking for a place in the lineup, particularly young children eager to roll through town on their patriotically bedecked bikes.
"That's part of what got me into this, because as a child I was in a parade in a decorated bike and I thought that was cool," said Schill, a Navy veteran. "It's just an old-time American tradition. It's important for the people to have some skin in the game, to participate in the parade ... We call it the 'People's Parade.'"
Prior to the parade, at 9 a.m., members of the Parade Committee will judge the storefront decoration contest, with prizes handed out later in the day for the first, second and third place winners.
This year's theme for the contest is the Liberty Bell, and Schill said he's expecting a good number of businesses to participate.
"Virtually all of them at least have a flag out ... and some come out dressed to the nines," he said. "We'd like to have the downtown gussied up (for the parade)."
The parade itself will feature a plethora of restored Army vehicles, along with a fleet of "mystery vehicles." Last year's mystery vehicle was the Mini Cooper. Schill refused to disclose any information about this year's.
The parade was sponsored by the Moorestown Business Association last year, but the parade committee decided to go out on its own this year, Schill said.
The committee is still accepting donations for the parade—not just this year's, but next year's as well. It's a key component to keeping the momentum going so the township never loses its Fourth of July Parade again.
"We're a free people and I think we should celebrate that freedom," said Schill. "People die for what we have, and shame on us for not celebrating that."
The parade kicks off at noon at Chester and Central avenues. Anyone scheduled to or interested in participating in the parade should arrive by 11 a.m. so parade organizers can get everyone in place.
The roughly hour-long parade will make its way up Chester, then turn down Main Street, before disbanding at Main and Church streets.
To make a donation or for more information, visit the Fourth of July Parade website.