The Gaspee Day Committee hosts the Annual Gaspee Days Parade on the second Saturday in June as part of its annual celebration. The purpose of the parade is to commemorate the burning of the HMS Gaspee in 1772, while at the same time, providing entertainment to the public. The parade is composed of the following groups and individuals, all of who are invited to participate:
I. Elected Officials
A. General Officers of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
2. Lieutenant Governor
3. Secretary of State
4. Attorney General
5. General Treasurer
B. Rhode Island Senators in Congress
C. Rhode Island Representatives in Congress
D. City of Warwick Mayor and City Council
E. City of Cranston Mayor and City Council
F. City of Providence Mayor
G. Warwick State Senators and Representatives
H. Cranston State Senators and Representative
II. Honored Guests (to include but not limited to)
A. Grand Marshal
B. Gaspee Day Committee Charter Members, Past Presidents, President, and Parade Chairman
C. Carrier of the Rhode Island Mace
D. Adjutant General of Rhode Island National Guard & the 88th Army Band
E. Rhode Island State Police, Warwick, Cranston, & Providence Color Guards
III. Colonial Fife & Drum and Militia
IV. Modern Drum & Bugle Corps and Bands
V. Floats and Fillers
The final composition of the parade (participants and line-up) are left up to the discretion of the current parade chairman. The parade chairman has the right to refuse anyone for inclusion in the parade. (Source: The Gaspee Daze 1998-1999 Edition, handbook of the Gaspee Days Committee, Karleen Wrath, Past President)
This is a rain or shine Parade. Only in extreme weather circumstances will the Parade be cancelled. In the event the Parade is cancelled an announcement will be placed on the Gaspee Phone Line at (401)781-1772 by 6:00 AM on the morning of the Parade. Efforts will be made to personally contact each group marching in the Parade. Announcements will also be made on local TV channels.
We have parking available at several lots located convenient to the Parade staging area. These lots are located at Pilgrim High School, and the Pilgrim Senior Center, both on Pilgrim Parkway, and the John Brown Francis Elementary School, and the shopping center lot, both on Miantonomo Drive. Priority parking for cars will be at John Brown Francis School, and for buses at shopping center lot (East of Planet Fitness). Please see the accompanying map for directions and details. Traffic congestion along the Parade route will be so intense just before the Parade that it becomes impossible to maneuver. Therefore, all Parade participants must park near and report to the beginning of the Parade route.
We will have shuttle buses available at the Parade end to return Parade participants back to parking lots near the Line-Up area. Participants will board these shuttlebuses (near Rhodes-on-the-Pawtuxet) which will depart when full. Because of traffic, we cannot allow drivers to bring their own buses to Rhodes until the Parade has ended sometime after 1:00 PM.
The Parade check-in and staging area is along Narragansett Parkway east of Warwick Avenue, Warwick, RI on the Saturday of the Parade. You may get information from any Gaspee Days Committee member in a red polo shirt. Your group is expected to be in place along the Parade route at 9:00 A.M. All floats and other vehicles must be in position no later than 9:00 AM. It is likely that units arriving late will not be able to be placed in the Parade. In general, marching groups line up on the South side of Narragansett Parkway (even numbers), while floats and towing vehicles line up on the North side (odd numbers). Support vehicles are not allowed into the Parade unless towing a float or cannon, etc. This will be enforced. The leader of each participating group must check in directly with the assigned Division Coordinator along the Parade line-up area. If your group is under contract, get an acknowledgment receipt from your Division Coordinator. Please bear in mind that your previously-assigned division number may change. We strive to give musical groups enough separation to play their music free from interference by other musical groups. We accomplish this by carefully planning each group's position in the Parade, and by using various non-musical "filler" groups or floats to provide adequate spacing. The Parade is, however, a dynamic event that requires much last minute adjustment.
The Gaspee Days Committee is licensed by both the Cities of Warwick and Cranston to conduct the annual Gaspee Days Parade under its supervision. Upon discovery of any rule violations, the appropriate police department will be contacted to rectify the situation. The following Gaspee Days Parade Participant Rules apply to all persons or groups (including politicians) applying to participate or participating in the Gaspee Days Parade. These rules are general, and are subject to revision by the Gaspee Days Committee and by the Parade Chairperson prior to the event.