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2nd Annual Gate City Fall Festival and Parade

Where: Parade begins at 300 Main St., Nashua. Festival held at Holman Stadium, 67 Amherst St., Nashua. 
When: Saturday, Oct. 17, parade begins at 10 a.m.; festival runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Cost: Free
Visit: gonashua.com




Follow those floats
Nashua parade leads to fall festival

10/15/15
By Angie Sykeny asykeny@hippopress.com



 The second annual Gate City Fall Festival and Parade will be held in Nashua Saturday, Oct. 17, with a new float competition and a new rule — anyone marching with a political campaign is required to host a free game or activity at the festival.

That way, they “add more to the day than just a bunch of political signs,” said Carolyn Mortellaro, event coordinator.
The parade will begin at 10 a.m. at Main Street and will end at Holman Stadium for an afternoon of free family activities, a children’s costume contest, refreshments, live entertainment and more.
“It was really [Mayor Donnalee Lozeau’s] vision,” Mortellaro said. “[She thought] it would be wonderful if we had a Main Street parade where kids could dress up and have a fun fall festival. Last year there were 52 floats and 217 kids in costume who marched.”
The parade will launch from 300 Main St., proceed north to Concord Street, turn left onto Manchester Street, then left onto Sargent’s Avenue before concluding at Holman Stadium. Participants will include the fire and police departments with their vehicles, the Nashua dog park and Humane Society, dance and theater groups, Nashua and Nashua West Rotary Clubs, Fright Kingdom and many others.
Inspired by the creativity of the floats at last year’s parade, the event committee decided to add a float competition. A judge will be watching for the best float at the parade and will announce the winner at the festival. The winner will receive a $500 donation in their name for the charity of their choice, or, if the winning float belongs to a nonprofit, they will receive the prize.
At the stadium after the parade, kids participating in the costume contest will have their own mini parade where judges will choose the winning costumes in four categories: spookiest, scariest, silliest and most creative.
“Last year, we had a Bride of Frankenstein, a [Maleficent], a girl in a dress with a red parasol shaped like a leaf, and there was the toilet [costume]. That kid was so funny,” Mortellaro said.
The festival will have live music on stage from local bands the New Englanders and the Cow Hampshire Folk as well as concession stands provided by the Nashua Silver Knights.
There will be around 30 free activities for families and kids. Enjoy fall favorites like hayrides, pumpkin-decorating, pony rides, a Ferris wheel and a petting zoo. New this year are the safari rides, which are battery-operated safari animals for kids to ride. Try your hand at the ring toss, bean bag toss and three-legged race, or check out the carnival classics like face-painting, caricaturists, balloon animals and the photo booth. Kids can even bring their teddy bear or another stuffed animal for a checkup at the teddy bear clinic.
“We want to see this [event] grow and become a family tradition for the Greater Nashua community,” Mortellaro said. “The [Winter] Holiday Stroll has had great success and has grown tremendously, and with [the Fall Festival and Parade] celebrated in the prettiest season we have in New England, I think it has every potential [to be as big].” 





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