Gator Parade, a Winsted town tradition, scheduled for Dec. 19

One of the many participants in the 2019 Gator Parade in Winsted.
One of the many participants in the 2019 Gator Parade in Winsted.

WINSTED — The Winsted Fire Department’s annual Gator Parade is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 19.
The event will begin at 5 p.m. and will cover many miles of roads throughout town.
The parade is organized annually by the department and is named after the late Gaeton “Gator” Gangi, who was a longtime member of the fire department who died in 2004.
According to a history of the Gator Parade by Beardsley and Memorial Library Genealogy Research Assistant Verna Gilson, who wrote a column about the history of the parade that was previously published in the Winsted Journal, Gangi served 30 years with the department.
“‘Gator’ as he was nicknamed, graduated from The Gilbert School and was a decorated Vietnam War veteran,” Gilson wrote. “He had served in the U.S. Army and received the Purple Heart and three other service medals. According to his family and friends, Gangi enjoyed a joke, spoke his mind, and enjoyed having fun.”
The parade includes emergency service vehicles from Winsted and other surrounding towns all decorated with Christmas lights and ornaments.
The vehicles travel throughout the town with their sirens blaring as they pass spectators on each street.
“It’s the holidays and everybody loves a parade,” former Winsted Fire Department Chief David Sartirana said in a previous interview. “Thinking back when we first started this I don’t think other departments were doing a kind of parade like this, but now there is a lot of them all over the Northwest Corner. I do think our department was one of the first Christmas parades.”
“This is one of the best parades you will ever find,” Winchester Center Fire Department Chief Peter Marchand said in a previous interview. “No one should ever miss it. I’ve taken part in this for the past 11 years and it’s great to be here. I love it!”

The parade route this year will be the same as last year’s:

Line up on Meadow st. facing east
Right on Lake
Right on 263
Left on Woodland
Left on West Lake
Right on East Lake
Left on Hurlbut
Left on Pratt
Right on Prospect
Left on Bridge
Across to Elm St.
Stay right on Elm st.
Right onto Wetmore
Left on Oak
Right on Beach
Across to Wallens
Right onto Florence
Right on Royer
Left on Benton
Right on Holabird
Right on Waldron
Left on Berg
Left on Stanton
Across to Colony
Left on Maloney
Right on Glendale
Right on Old New Hartford
Right on RT 44
Right onto Spencer/Hinsdale
Right onto Wheeler
End at Station 1 on Elm St.

For more information go to the event’s Facebook page at this link

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