On Saturday, the Roswell community gathered for the 62nd time to participate in the Frances McGahee Youth Day Celebration.
Coordinated by the Roswell Recreation, Parks, Historic and Cultural Affairs Department in partnership with local churches, volunteer organizations and community members, the theme of the celebration this year was “Youth: Roswell’s Gold Medal.”
The day’s festivities kicked off with a 5K run at 9:45 a.m. and continued with a parade at 10 a.m. The parade lined up on Mimosa and traveled all the way through old Roswell ending in the Roswell Area Park.
The parade participants this year included multiple schools, churches, sports and other organizations. They all embraced the theme by adding gold medals, Olympic torches and American flags to their floats.
Rotary International undertook the Olympic theme with a youthful float filled with bright colors.
After setting up Rotary International’s float on Mimosa, Rotary president Jacque Digieso said, “The Youth Day Parade brings awareness to how Rotary is interacting with the youth through Interact Cub and is the perfect event to celebrate all of the youth in Roswell.”
Sweet Apple Elementary School was inspired by the 2012 London Olympic Games’ torch and modeled their float after it.
Along with the various float designs, the parade also hosted live music from the Roswell High School marching band.
Playing in her fourth Youth Day Parade, Roswell High School senior Piper Cerny, 17, said, “It is so fun to see the young and the old from the community get together and just have a good time. It really brings Roswell together.”
Rachel Germaine, 17, was this year’s Youth Day Grand Marshal. A high school senior, Germaine placed 14th in the women’s single luge competition at the 2012 Winter Youth Olympic Games in Innsbruck, Austria.
After the parade ended in Roswell Area Park, the festivities continued with an all-day outdoor celebration on the football field with food and games galore.