Sept. 04–The sounds of truck horns shook the buildings in downtown Holland for the Labor Day Truck Parade.
The parade, held on Monday, Sept. 4, kicked off at Herman Miller in Zeeland and traveled through downtown and continued along Eighth Street in downtown Holland, ending at the Civic Center parking lot for a free ice cream social.
Jackie DeGroot is from the Holland area and has been coming down for the Truck Parade for the past five or six years. For her, it brings back fond memories of her husband, who worked as a trucker.
“I just love the truck parade,” DeGroot said. “My husband worked in the trucking industry for his career at Holland Hitch so we would come to it because of that. This year was great.”
DeGroot also stressed the importance of showcasing the area’s trucks because of all they do for the Holland community.
“I think that a lot of people forget that it is trucks that bring the majority of things to every store,” DeGroot said. “Without the truckers, people wouldn’t have anything at their fingertips like they do. People don’t realize how many trucking companies there are here plus the private industries that have their own trucks.”
“They are very proud of their trucks and this is a very important day to them.”
Kyle Westfall traveled to downtown Holland from Niles so that his children could partake in the parade.
“We came up for the parade last year and my son really liked it and we were looking for something to do and thought it would be fun again,” Westfall said. “The biggest thing is to be able to actually take my kids to do something like this. They mean the world to me and to do stuff is really the greatest reward and to see them enjoy it is really awesome.”
For Westfall and his children, the highlight of last year was the ice cream social that took place at the end of the parade. Westfall said he plans to come down again next year and hopes to make the truck parade a yearly tradition.
“It is really awesome that there is so much for us to do around here,” he said. “We enjoy doing things like this and it is just nice to be able to do. It’s better than sitting at home all day.”
For many in attendance, including Lisa VanDyke, the parade was a way to spend quality time with family.
“It was perfect, awesome,” VanDyke said. “There were so many more trucks than I had expected. We come down to Holland a lot for events because it is so family friendly.”
Along with spending time with the family, VanDyke stressed the importance of recognizing the men and women who work so hard all year long.
“I just think that everybody works so hard all year long and it is nice to have a day where we can celebrate what they do and they can relax and have fun also,” she said.
The Labor Day Truck Parade and Ice Cream Social began in 2006 and has grown every year as a way to honor and celebrate employees of Holland and Zeeland area businesses.
In 2011, the Holland/Zeeland Community Labor Day Truck Parade Foundation was created to ensure the ongoing success of the event.
— Follow this reporter on Twitter @SentinelAustin or @BizHolland.
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