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Memorial Day goes virtual this year

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ELKTON — Let’s face it; this year’s Memorial Day Celebration is going to look different in many ways thanks to the global pandemic.

Gone are the public festivities and celebrations because of the need for social distancing. Can you imagine the Elkton High School Golden Elks Marching Band trying to maneuver down North Street when the members of the tuba section six feet apart from each other?

Not in the mood to totally surrender, The Elkton Chamber and Alliance is still holding its popular Memorial Day Parade and Cecil County Memorial VFW Post #6027 is still holding its Memorial Day Ceremony but this year both will be virtual.

Jessica Price, executive director of the Elkton Chamber and Alliance said everyone is welcome to contribute to the virtual Memorial Day Parade.

“Post your photos of past celebrations,” Price said. The backyard barbecue, the pool party, family picnics from days gone by, and of course the Memorial Day traditions from the services and observations held in communities all over Cecil County.

“Even if people just want to tell stories,” she suggested. “It can be anything.”

Gene Daley, post commander at the VFW on Turkey Point Road in North East said veterans would be remembered in a Facebook Live ceremony beginning at 1 p.m. Monday.

“We normally do it under the pavilion with lots of chairs set up,” Daley said of the annual well-attended event. “This year we are moving the ceremony to the monument in front of the VFW where the flag is.”

He said only chairs for the participants would be set up in keeping with the orders to be socially distant during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two speakers are scheduled; Emmett Roberts, executive director of the Maryland Veterans Chamber of Commerce and Chuck McArthur. Olivia Reynolds will perform both the National Anthem and God Bless America with Kevin Crouse presenting taps on his bugle.

The Virtual Memorial Day Parade can be joined through the Elkton Chamber and Alliance Facebook page.

To view the Virtual Memorial Day service at Cecil County Memorial VFW Post 6027 connect with that Facebook page.

Veterans will be given a free bagged lunch Monday from 2 until 6 p.m. at the VFW, which continues to operate under the take-out rules established for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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