• Melissa Smith

The Great Falls August 29, 2020 "Ridin' with Biden!" Parade

On August 29, 2020, I organized a "Ridin' with Biden!" Parade, tracing the route President John F. Kennedy took on his visit here in 1963. We met at noon at the Airport Cell Phone lot.

Several vehicles were decorated with campaign signs, American flags, and progressive causes. Gerry Jennings won a “Ridin' With Biden” car magnet which was presented to her just before the parade began.

The parade proceeded from the airport to 10th Avenue South following the parade route that JFK took in 1963. As described by the History Museum's archivist:

"... President Kennedy arrived at the Great Falls Airport at 11:35 am on the morning of September 26, 1963. From the airport, they traveled down 10th Ave South to 6th Street and went North. They took 6th Street to 600 6th Ave South, which was the home of Senator Mike Mansfield’s parents. The visit was for about 10 mins. From there they went south on 7th Street back to 10th Ave South and over to 15th Street, then down to 2nd Ave South and to Memorial Stadium. The speech was at 12:25 for 20 minutes. From the stadium, it was 2nd Ave. South to 15th Street, then back up to 10th Ave South and the airport. Kennedy’s plane left at 1:30pm."

Our parade route then traveled north on 15th Street, turned left on Central Avenue, and proceeded down Central to the Mansfield Civic Center Parking Lot, where the 3o+ parade participants gathered, chatted, and congratulated one another on a great afternoon:

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