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Sonoma County Gazette
Petaluma Perspective by Houston Porter

Veterans Day Parade and Flyover, Book Sale &
Festival of Trees

Oct 31, 2018
by Houston Porter


Veterans Day Parade and Flyover

Petaluma’s incredible Veterans Day Parade will be held on Veterans Day, which this year falls on Sun, Nov 11. Recognized as one of the best Veterans Day Parades in the U.S., roughly 40,000 people visit Petaluma to watch and participate in the parade.

Veterans Day is held on November 11 to celebrate the end World War I. The Armistice with Germany officially began at the 11th hour or the 11th day or the 11th month in 1918. Although it used to be overserved as Armistice Day, it was renamed in 1954 to Veterans Day, and honors those who have served in the United States Armed Forces. By contrast, Memorial Day honors those who died while in military service, and Armed Forces Day, a minor U.S. holiday, honors those that currently serve in the U.S. Military.

As always, there will be plenty of flyovers, including a Vietnam era Huey helicopter, Sheriff and Coast Guard helicopters, and various historic planes from thePetaluma Airport and Pacific Air Museum. Other highlights will include Grand Marshals Terry Park and Ken Vabkar, both Vietnam veterans, Clydesdales pulling a coach with Gold Star parents Lombardi Harriott, and USCG Two Rock and Cotati Harley Clubs.

For those in the parade, staging begins at 11 a.m., on 4th Street, from D Street down to I Street. For those wishing to attend the parade, music will be presented in the gazebo inWalnut Park (D & 4 Streets), before the parade kicks off at 1 p.m. The parade normally lasts for roughly and hour and a half and culminates back at Walnut Park at roughly 2:45 p.m., with an opening prayer, the Pledge of Allegiance, and an introduction of speakers. Also, Sonoma County’s very own Andrea Krautwill sing the National Anthem and God Bless America. Major sponsors include Friedman’s Home Improvement, Clover Sonoma, Exchange Bank, and De Carli’s Propane. More info at

Book Sale

The Friends of the Petaluma Library hold excellent book sales three times a year, with the next one coming up in November. It will start with the children’s book sale on Fri, Nov 9, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., followed the next day with half off everything that’s left, Sat, Nov 10, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The next week’s adult book sale runs from Wed, Nov 14, starting at 4 p.m. thru Sat, Nov 17. On Saturday, books start at half off, and at 3 p.m. start selling for $2 per bag, for as many books as you can fit in the bag. If you can’t find the dates/times easily on their website, give them a call at 763-9801. 

Lighted Boat Parade CANCELLED
Santa and Mrs. Claus are still coming

Due to continuing issues related to the lack of dredging of the Petaluma River, the hugely popular Lighted Boat Parade has been canceled. Not only is it very hard to move that number of boats up the ever-shallowing river, but the majority of the docks around the Turning Basin are now closed because at low to medium tides, they are actually sitting on the mud. Those docks are meant to be used while afloat and can be damaged if weighted down with people while sitting on the mud.

However, Santa's Riverboat Arrival is still scheduled for Sat, Nov 24, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the River Turning Basin. With only one boat and a 4-foot tide, Santa and Mrs. Claus should be able to sail in and disembark at the River Plaza Shopping Center with little trouble. Entertainment starts at 11:30am and Santa arrives at noon. He & the Mrs. hand out candy canes on the way to their “workshop.” Stay to take photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus in front of TAPSTAPS Beer Co. and Kitchen, which always has a great selection of both local and international beers on tap, along with some great food.

Festival of Trees

On Fri, Nov 30, from 6 – 9 p.m., the Fabulous Women and the Hotel Petaluma invite holiday guests to stroll through the hotel and bid on magical trees decorated by local businesses, listen to live Christmas music, enter our raffle, shop at the holiday marketplace, enjoy our sweet shop, and take photos with Santa. It’s a festive occasion for the entire family. The proceeds support charitable causes and admission is free.”


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