RI celebrates 51st Gaspee Days Parade

The Gaspee Days parade commemorates the June 1772 burning of the British schooner H.M.S. Gaspee, which was the first act of the Revolutionary War.

WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) – Saturday’s rain held off long enough for Pawtuxet Village’s 51st annual Gaspee Days Parade.

The Gaspee Days parade commemorates the June 1772 burning of the British schooner H.M.S. Gaspee, which was the first act of the Revolutionary War.

“It was the largest rebellion that took place prior to any other rebellion that we know of,” CWO3 Todd Garrepy with the U.S. Army tells Eyewitness News at the parade. “So it’s pretty important for the American Revolution.”

Every year on the second Saturday in June, there’s a parade which runs through Warwick to the Cranston border.

It’s not celebrated anyplace else in the country.

“I have been coming here for the last forty-plus years,” says veteran William Hancock. “Rain, shine, I’ve sat through it all.

Many people march in the parade to commemorate this day in history, and the victory it meant for Rhode Island patriots.

“This is actually my fourteenth [Gaspee Days Parade],” 14-year-old Jacob Schiller from Arlington tells Eyewitness News Saturday. “Fourteenth out of fourteen years!”

Along with the parade, Saturday’s events included a 5k race, block party, and fireworks show.

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