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Here’s your guide to Alexandria’s George Washington Birthday Parade on President’s Day

The annual George Washington Birthday Parade is returning to Alexandria on President’s Day (Monday, Feb. 19). Here’s what you need to know.

The theme of the 101st annual parade is “George Washington: Alexandria’s Living Legend,” and this year’s parade marshals are the recipients of the prestigious Living Legends of Alexandria award.

According to parade organizers:

The Grand Marshal will be representatives of the Living Legends of Alexandria, individuals who have contributed to the community in an exemplary and lasting way that has significantly impacted the quality of life in Alexandria and serves as an inspiration to others. 2024 is also the 275th Birthday of the founding of the City of Alexandria.

Thousands of freemasons, city-related groups and nonprofits, and politicians march in the parade, which the city says is the oldest and largest of its kind in the world. The free event was first held in 1923 to commemorate the cornerstone laying of the George Washington Masonic National Memorial at King Street and Commonwealth Avenue.

The parade begins at 1 p.m. at the intersection of South Fairfax Street and Gibbon Street. Participants will then march north on South Fairfax Street to City Hall (301 King Street), take a left at Queen Street, and another left at S. Royal Street to the reviewing stand, which will be located at the intersection of N. Royal Street and King Streets. The parade route ends at the intersection of S. Royal Street and Wilkes Street, and the parade is scheduled to end at 3 p.m.

Parade organizers will also select the first, second and third-ranking participants in the following categories:

  • Antique vehicles
  • Masonic lodge with the best spirit
  • Community/fraternal group
  • Float
  • Historical unit
  • Honor and color guards
  • Military units and drill team
  • Youth groups
  • The spirit of George Washington

Additionally, the winning restaurant in this year’s annual Cherry Challenge will be announced.

Alexandria’s next parade is the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Old Town on Saturday, March 2.

The 2024 George Washington Birthday Parade route (via GW Birthday Parade)

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