Colonial Days celebrates 55 years of local heritage

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Each year in early June, the Village of Painted Post holds Colonial Days, a four-day celebration of the area’s rich heritage. It is one of the largest and longest consecutively held outdoor festivals in upstate New York. 

The first Colonial Days was proclaimed in June 1964 by Mayor Fuller Allen as a celebration, “in official recognition of the improvements made in the business district of the village.” 

Many of the events centered around the Village Square. Residents and shopkeepers would dress up in colonial period clothes for the entire week of the celebration. 

A wooden stockade was set up in the Village Square where residents could pay to have their friends and neighbors “held” temporarily or put in the stocks. 

Local Boy Scout troops held an ice cream social on the warm Friday nights of Colonial Days. 

Eventually, the hub of the festivities was moved from the square to nearby Hodgman Park. With its move to the park, Colonial Days expanded to include band performances and a midway.

In the late 1960’s, a parade was added to the Colonial Days festivities. It soon became one of the highlights of the celebration for many residents and local visitors. 

Colorful floats created by local civic organizations wind through the streets of the village along with fire trucks and rescue vehicles from many local fire companies.

Local school marching bands move along the parade route in colorful costumes as they perform for the crowds.  Today, the parade is the largest professionally adjudicated High School Marching Band parade in New York State.

The annual Miss Colonial Days pageant attracts young ladies ranging from ages 4 to 18, competing in six different age categories. The competition is held on Thursday during Colonial Days in Hodgeman Park. The winners will receive a title, crown, and up to $500 in cash and prizes.

The 55th annual Colonial Days celebration will take place this year from June 6th through the 9th and will feature fireworks, a chicken BBQ, live music, and the carnival rides in Hodgman Park.

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