By Aaron Keebaugh
The Columbus Day Parade Committee—comprised of city government officials, local business leaders, and interested residents—is trying to bring Revere's Columbus Day parade back to life in 2013. But orchestrating a parade not only takes time, it costs money.
That is why the parade committee is hosting a kick-off fundraiser: a Columbus Day Breakfast to be held at the Beachmont VFW at 9:00 a.m. on October 8.
The committee met Monday evening at the Revere Chamber of Commerce at 108 Beach Street to iron out some of the breakfast details.
“The whole point of the breakfast is to raise awareness and bring back the parade,” Miles Lang-Kennedy said. Mayor Rizzo will serve as the emcee at the breakfast, and the administration has sent out about 400 invitations to state government officials, he said.
Committee Cochair Nicholas Bua told attendees that the Beachmont VFW could hold about 250 to 300 people, but they could also make use of the bar space for the breakfast. Paul Travaglini advised the group to try and sell as many tickets as possible so the fundraiser is profitable.
The committee is presently working to find a catering service for the breakfast and is still accepting bids, Bua said. “We want to keep it in Revere.”
Bob Upton, First Vice President of the Revere Chamber of Commerce, chipped in, “We would love to have [the caterer] be a member of the Chamber of Commerce.”
Bua said the committee is looking at spend $10 to $15 for each breakfast, which will yield a $10–$15 dollar profit on each ticket sold. The revenue will go towards the nearly $60,000 price tag to put on next year’s Columbus Day parade.
Bands will absorb a sizable portion of that cost. Bua said that the Shriners’ band will cost about $10,000, and the large marching bands from Boston University and Boston College, which the committee has discussed hiring for the parade, would cost about $5,000 each.
But the bulk of the money raised will pay for parade personnel and military units, who will march in the parade's first division. Bua said that he hopes to bring in the USS Constitution’s commandant and area navy units.
In addition, plans for the mile-long parade include dance squads and activities for children. The committee is also looking for floats to include in the parade and is considering inviting groups who construct some of the more colorful floats for East Boston parades, Bua said.
Due to a lack of funding, former Mayor Thomas Ambrosino discontinued Revere's parade in 2009. Of the plans for the new parade, Bua commented, “The community will enjoy it; Mayor Rizzo will enjoy it too.”
The fundraiser breakfast has already received donations from local Kiwanis and Rotary members, Bua said. Paul Travaglini, who co-chairs the parade committee with Bua, said that East Boston Savings bank has pledged $2,500 for the breakfast.
The committee plans to print a brochure to recognize each donor and their level of contribution: Donors who give $1000 and above will be listed at the platinum level; a gift of $500 will earn a gold level; $250 will earn silver; and $100 will earn bronze.
The brochures will be distributed at the October 8 breakfast. The committee decided on a September 15 deadline for donors and sponsors who would like to have their names printed in the brochure. Donors are welcome to contribute after that date, but the names will appear on a separate insert to be placed in the brochures.
Tickets for the breakfast are $25 per person and $250 for a full table.
The parade committee will hold its next meeting on September 5, when members will begin