A Labor Day tradition
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Fire engines, marching bands, large balloons, horses and clowns were among the 156 units that marched through the streets of Olde Towne Gaithersburg on Monday in the city's 72nd Annual Labor Day Parade. Prizes for entries in 12 categories will be announced in two weeks. The parade is one Gaithersburg's oldest traditions, according to the city's website. The Gaithersburg Fire Department established a rescue squad in 1938, and among that year's fundraising events was the first Labor Day Parade.
Early parades included a band competition, carnival booths and a dance. The carnivals and dances eventually ceased to be profitable, but the volunteers sponsored the parade until 1977, when a residents' committee took over.
The event is now coordinated by the City of Gaithersburg Department of Parks, Recreation and Culture, with support from the Gaithersburg-Washington Grove Fire Department.
The parade been held every year except 1942, during World War II.