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Hingham Massachusetts, Incorporated 1635, History & Pride

Town Government &


Committees: Fourth of July Parade Committee

Hingham FireworksFourth of July Parade Committee

It is the responsibility of the July 4th Parade Committee to plan, organize and raise funds for the annual Independence Day Parade, as well as the Band Concert by The Satuit Band at the Harbor.  The floats, marchers, and bands are provided by different organizations.  The fundraisers pay for the marching bands as well as the historic civil & revolutionary war marching units that everyone enjoys during the parade. Since the beginning of the nineties, the committee has raised the funds necessary to hire the bands, the reenactment marching units and the band concert. 

The major fundraisers are the corporate donations from both local and regional businesses and the annual Silent Auction. The rejuvenated golf tournament (the South Shore Fourball, a must play tournament for the area's best golfers!), the response from the Light Plant flyer in June, and the annual button sales also generate needed funds.

2013 Report

The Hingham 4th of July Parade Committee is pleased to report on its highly successful activities in 2013, culminating in an entertaining and respectful Parade enjoyed by the whole community.

This year's theme - Stars & Stripes Forever! - provided participants the chance to honor our past as well as active service men and women and our safety officers. The Militia, as always, reminds us each year of the continuity of the service commitment of our community. The button design also exhibited our reverence for flag and country. After the Marathon bombings, the symbolism represented by the button resulted in one of the most purchased designs in recent memory.

The committee placed this year's Grand Marshal, Geri Duff, adjacent to two of her many passionate causes – the Girl Scouts and the Bare Cove Fire Museum apparatus! Geri maintained her unbounded enthusiasm throughout the Parade – despite the heat – while taking wonderful photographs of the spec-tators along the route.

We also had many outstanding floats – as usual! This year, the judges had a particularly difficult job, in part because there were nearly 30 entries, but they ultimately settled on the following awards:

• Most Beautiful – Hingham High Rowing Association
• Most Patriotic – Hingham Republican Committee
• Most Original – Jones Street Neighborhood
• Best of Parade – Su Escuala

Although the focus of our activities is ultimately the big day itself, the Parade is the culmination of a number of less public activities by the Committee in the months, weeks, days – and sometimes hours – leading up to the event. The fun begins again within a few weeks after the Parade's conclusion. Members evaluate the content, conduct and organization of the event itself, with safety as a primary criterion, and then start planning improvements for the coming year.

Work on the 2013 Parade began in earnest in late 2012 under Chairman Jim Murphy. We welcomed new members Deanna Marie Costa, Dewitt DeLawter, Monica Conyngham, Robin Nickerson, Bill Nickerson, Eric Dresser, Dave Madden, and Melissa Caine to the Committee, and discussed the selection of this year's Parade theme. After consideration of input from supporters through the Committee's Facebook page, we decided on "Stars & Stripes Forever!" and communicated the theme to the Elementary schools. Art Teachers Mr. Bliss (East), Ms. Mayo (South), Ms. McKeon (Foster), and Ms. Marsjanik (PRS) set their students about designing a 2013 Parade button.

Later, the Committee had the pleasure of selecting the winning button,
an activity that brings out the artist in all the members and which is one of the most appealing activities we perform, while never easy. The winning entry was by Sophie Spielberger, a 5th grader from East School, who was re-warded with a com-memorative plaque from Aisling Gallery and a place of honor in the Parade cortege.

With these important theme-related activities completed, we got down to business to raise the funds needed to host a truly memorable Parade. A key fundraising activity in recent years has been the Silent Auction evening. This year, we opted to change the venue to Black Rock Country Club, and the move was well-received. A wonderful addition was the presence of "Mrs. Massachusetts International 2013," Laura Ferguson, who lent her support for the April 26th event by greeting attendees. Jason Caine led the organization of the auction, with key support from Melissa Caine, Mary Ellen Carlisle, Deanna Costa, Cassie McDermott and Carrie Murphy. As always, local businesses stepped up with a broad selection of donations covering their services and products. Melissa Caine designed the booklet and flyer for the evening. So thank you to our merchants, for their important contribution to the evening's success, to the management and staff at Black Rock Country Club for their hospitality, and to the many friends and Hingham citizens who attended and contributed financially to the evening's success.

Chairman Jim Murphy's in-genuity led to a new, and highly effective fundraising effort for 2013, called "50 Flags Campaign." With guidance and support from Hingham Veterans' Services Director, Keith Jermyn, Jim created a team of volunteers who placed 50 U.S. flags on house lawns for a donation of $50. The flags, which remained on lawns for about a week, were a terrific way for people to show their support of our servicemen and women, and to match their pride in the Parade with a financial contribution. After the first few displays were seen around town, and information provided in the Hingham Journal, the orders really took off, and about 80 households participated.

Dave Madden volunteered to lead this effort for us and we also received great assistance from the local Boy Scouts, Troop 52. Thank you to all who participated in this event that provided wonderful reminders of patriotism across all corners of Hingham. Thank you, also, for your patience as the number of requests required the subsequent purchase of more than 1,000 flags to fulfill the orders. We expect this effort to grow in 2014, and will be looking for more ways to have community youth volunteer for the effort.

Our Button-selling fundraiser was, as always, in the expert hands of Committee member Ginny Gray. Every year, she and her Hingham-Hull Rotary colleagues place buttons with local merchants and at town facilities, and Ginny herself makes great efforts to attend town events and the Farmers' Market to extend her selling reach. A button table at "A Taste of Hingham," the downtown food festival held in May, was a big hit – raising more than $700 in a few hours. The Committee also sees a need to recruit the town's students to help in this effort.

This year also saw the return of the Selectmen's Golf Tournament on June 3rd as a key fundraiser for us. Led by Ted Alexiades, Jay McGrail, Terence Granahan, and Jim Murphy, the scramble format offered exciting golf while also raising much needed funds for the Parade. Our thanks to Gold Sponsors AW Perry, Inc., Aquarion Water Company, and Carol Shaughnessy, as well as additional sponsors Clarke Communication Group, Inc., ColorMax Graphics, Inc., TRACEY Environmental, Inc., Terrance E. Granahan, GrayMatter Agency, Liberty Grille, Pyramid Printing, Raffael's Greenside Grille, The Talbots, Inc. and True North Bank Group.

The 2013 South Shore Four Ball was also a major fundraising success. The event, which was started only a few years ago by Jay McGrail and his great team at the South Shore Country Club, has grown into a challenging two day tournament for many of the best golfers in eastern Massachusetts! Jay and the SSCC also provide us with much needed Parade Day mobility in the form of golf carts, essential for the mustering of the many participants - for these efforts the Committee remains very grateful.

Our annual flyer was kindly included in the June Hingham Municipal Light Plant (HMLP) invoice and issued to approximately 9,500 residences. The flyer, designed by Carrie Murphy and printed by The Ink Spot (at no cost), allowed us to reach out to most of the households in Hingham with a request for donations and the latest Parade news. Such support from the community and local businesses is critical to the success of the Committee's fund-raising efforts.
This year, thanks to the time and talents Deanna Costa, we used social media to publicize and organize these events – with great success. Through the Parade's Facebook page, supporters in the community were able to weigh in on the selection of the Parade theme, buy tickets in advance for the Silent Auction, and find out about the 50 Flags Campaign.

And of course, there is the big day itself. A long list of contributors deserve our recognition and thanks. Firstly, our own Hingham police, led

Hingham Girls Hockey U10 Champs by the Committee's liaison, Deputy Chief Glenn Olsson, provide seamless and unobtrusive coordination of public safety; Dan Leahy, General Manager of Porsche of Norwell /Audi Norwell /Volvo Village of Norwell, who provided the stylish convertibles for the Grand Marshal,
Geri Duff, and Citizen of the Year, Ruth Potter, to ride in; Aquarion Water Company, which provided water at the Parade. Finally, we are indebted to the many Parade Day volunteers who provided the additional mustering supported needed to meet the needs of the Day. We hope to see all return next year to continue the tradition, and to add additional members drawn from the many active Hingham community groups.

2013 Parade Committee under Chairman Jim Murphy: Jason Caine, Louis O'Dea, Carrie Murphy, Deputy Chief Glenn Olsson, Monica Conyngham, Virginia Gray, Dewitt DeLawter, Ruth Potter, George Ford (Uncle Sam), Deanna Costa, Robin Nickerson, Bill Nickerson, Eric Dresser, Cyndy Tonucci, Mary Ellen Carlisle, Dave Madden, Susan Hagstrom, Melissa Caine, Mary Pizzelli, Cassie McDermott, John Monz, and Dan Lahiff.

Our e-mail address is Information about past and future parades can be found on the Parade page or on our Facebook page

If you would like to be a part of the committee or participate in the parade or golf tournament please contact Jim Murphy, 781-726-2519, or

Appointee (Appt. By Selectmen annually)
Jim Murphy, Chair Jason Caine
Louis O'Dea Carrie Murphy
Deputy Chief Glenn Olsson, Police Liaison Monica Conyngham
Virginia Gray, Rotary Club of Hingham & Hull Liaison Deanna Costa
George Ford, Uncle Sam Bill Nickerson
Robin Nickerson Cyndy Tonucci
Eric Dresser Melissa Caine
Mary Ellen Carlisle Cassie McDermott
Susan Hagstrom Dan Lahiff
Mary Pizzelli Christine Speilberger
John Monz