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Morgan Hill
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May 20, 2022

Serious reflection and fun this holiday weekend

Although many workers and most school children think of Memorial
Day as the start of summer
– and here in Morgan Hill the Mushroom Mardi Gras is the key
component of the three-day weekend – the day itself has a much more
solemn origin: to honor those who have died in service to our
country.
Although many workers and most school children think of Memorial Day as the start of summer – and here in Morgan Hill the Mushroom Mardi Gras is the key component of the three-day weekend – the day itself has a much more solemn origin: to honor those who have died in service to our country.

So, while we don’t want to discourage anyone from participating in the sun-splashed start-of-summer activities that fill the Memorial Day weekend, we urge everyone take some time to honor the sacrifices made by those who bought our precious American freedoms with their lives.

Parents, especially, take a few moments over breakfast or at bedtime to discuss with your children why they’re enjoying a long holiday weekend. Tell them about the soldiers – from the Revolutionary War to the present day – who loved their country so much that they gave their lives to preserve it.

If you want to reinforce that lesson, we suggest setting aside a small part of your long weekend to attend one of the many Memorial Day observances that will take place on Monday in South Valley:

• In Morgan Hill, a ceremony will take place at the downtown Veteran’s Memorial at 9 a.m. Monday. The 12th annual event will feature an invocation by Rev. Anita Mason, patriotic songs, wreaths and Taps to honor Morgan Hill’s veterans. Following the downtown ceremony, at 11 a.m. Johnson Funeral Home will lay a wreath to fallen veterans at Mount Hope Cemetery on Spring Avenue.

• Saturday, May 24, a flagpole at the Grange Hall, 40 E. Fourth St. will be dedicated by Boy Scout Troop 730 to honor their Scout leader, Dennis Heinsohn, who died a year and a half ago while hiking with the troop. 9 a.m.

• In San Benito County, commemorations will occur at three cemeteries: 9 a.m. at San Juan Bautista Cemetery, 10:15 a.m. at Odd Fellows Cemetery in Hollister and 11 a.m. at Calvary Cemetery in Hollister. Beginning at 11:45 a.m. and following a two-year, $4.4 million renovation, the Hollister Veterans Memorial Building on San Benito Street will be rededicated in its own special celebration. The rededication will feature a fly-over by P-4 aircraft.

• In Gilroy, a remembrance ceremony will take place at 9 a.m. at Gavilan Hills Cemetery. Speakers include Santa Clara County Supervisor Don Gage, Gilroy Mayor Tom Springer and an invocation by Wayne Cegelske.

A small investment of time at any of these events will pay great dividends in helping our children learn the importance of appreciating the sacrifices made by so many selfless individuals to secure our freedom.

One of those freedoms those brave soldiers secured for us – the pursuit of happiness – is also appropriately celebrated during the holiday weekend. We know how to have a good time welcoming the start of summer in South Valley.

A parade, featuring Grand Marshal Jack Sturla, a World War II veteran and lifelong Gilroyan, will kick off at 11 a.m. on Memorial Day at Monterey and Tenth streets in Gilroy. Following the parade, an afternoon of family fun is planned at Christmas Hill Park. The event, which runs from 1 to 4 p.m., will feature plenty of summer food and fun activities for the whole family.

And, of course, Morgan Hill’s signature Memorial Day weekend event – the Mushroom Mardi Gras – will start the summer in fine fungal style. Two days of musical entertainment – headliners Montrose and Pete Escovedo’s Orchestra, from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., plus dozens of arts and crafts vendors, food of all kinds, Munchkinland for the tots and kid-approved activities will keep the family busy and entertained. Parking and shuttles are free.

The festival, which raises funds for scholarships and celebrates the city’s number one crop, will take place on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Community Park. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for senior citizens and kids older than 5. www.mhmushroommardigras.com for details and schedules.

There’s room this long holiday weekend for serious reflection and summer fun. We encourage South Valley residents to take part in both this Memorial Day weekend.

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