It’s a Grand Old Parade!

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Patriotic floats, a bicycle parade, marching bands, Armed Services veterans and active duty and community groups are all part of the Point Pleasant Beach Memorial Day Parade. [DANIELLA HEMINGHAUS]

POINT PLEASANT BEACH — The Annual Point Pleasant Beach Memorial Day Bike Parade will be celebrating its 18th year on May 25. What started as a way to cope with the tragedy that was 9/11 by five Point Pleasant Beach mothers, has snowballed into a yearly tradition upheld by two area women that celebrates the community, veterans and those who are still on active duty.

Sharon McCartney and Tracey Jackson have been organizing the patriotic parade since its inception in 2002, and can practically finish each other’s sentences when it comes to talking about the parade. While other moms moved away or focused on other projects, the pair has stayed dedicated to putting on a family-oriented bike parade, where anyone can participate and ride their bike, stroller, or wagon in the name of celebrating America.

After 9/11, Ms. Jackson said that a friend had seen a Disney movie titled “Pollyanna,” and in that movie there was a bicycle parade on the Fourth of July.

“And so we were talking about how there was nothing for Memorial Day [in Point Pleasant Beach], and at that time everybody was so….” trailed off Ms. Jackson.

“We were all heartbroken,” picked up Ms. McCartney. “We wanted to honor our veterans and the military.”

The friend suggested they mimic the spirit of the parade, and so the Annual Memorial Day Bike Parade in Beach was born.

This is an excerpt of the print article. For more on this story, read The Ocean Star—on newsstands Friday or online in our e-Edition.

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