Large crowds are anticipated to flock to Granville Saturday as the newly restored and completely functional World War II Veterans Memorial Clock is revealed. The event will kick off with a parade and conclude with the unveiling of the clock.
Clock committee chair Rick Roberts said he wanted to clarify that while invitations have gone out to organizations, dignitaries and World War II veterans, the event is free and open to the public – and they’re hoping for a big crowd.
Roberts said he had a mental picture of the event as something like New Year’s Eve in Times Square with people packed in to every available spot to catch a glimpse of the unveiling ceremony.
Roberts said organizers hope to see at least 1,000 people, the number reported to have gathered in Sept. 23, 1943 first ceremony, on Main Street Saturday.
A tent will be set up on Main Street to protect the honored guest for the rededication, the World War II veterans.
Roberts said due to weather concerns organizers decided they needed a way to shield the honored guests whether it be from bright sunshine and hot weather or wind and rain.
Space in the tent will be reserved, outside of that area folding chairs will be set up, some of which will be available first come, first served.
Beyond the folding chairs along sidewalks, in the parking lot and from anyplace else where they can stand, sit or crouch everyone is welcome to attend the ceremony, Roberts said.
The event begins at 5 p.m. as the parade steps off from the parking lot of Granville Elementary School on Quaker Street.
Parade elements will continue up Quaker to West Main Street onto Main Street to pass the reviewing stand prior to finishing around the corner on Church Street.
Veterans who would like to march in the parade do not need to be in uniform, organizers said, but should arrive at the rallying point no later than 4:30 p.m. to be organized into a group.
Organizers plan to have the rededication ceremony start about 6 p.m. at the intersection of North and Main streets near the TD Bank and continue to until about 7:15 p.m. when the clock will be unveiled and powered up.
The program will include music and feature speakers Cols. Edward ‘Ned’ Fish (U.S. Army) and Jeff MacEachron (U.S. Air Force) as well as clock’s restorer, John Freed. Granville High School assistant principal Dan Poucher will emcee the event.