In the News

Police Commissioner John Barbieri will Lead the 2017 Parade of Big Balloons

Monday, October 30, 2017

Spirit of Springfield President Judy Matt was joined this morning by Attorney Melinda Phelps, Spirit of Springfield Board Chair, Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno, Fred Christensen, Vice President for CBRE – Northeast and General Manager for Tower Square, Chief Master Sergeant Maryanne Walts of the 104th Fighter Wing at Barnes Air National Guard who served as the 2016 Parade Marshal, and Peter Lappin, a long-time volunteer.  They announced plans for the 2017 Parade of the Big Balloons, sponsored by Tower Square, and the 2017 Parade Marshal, Springfield Police Commissioner John Barbieri.

Commissioner Barbieri is being honored for his nearly 30 years of service to Springfield as a patrolman, officer and commissioner with the Springfield Police Department.  Since being sworn is as Commissioner in 2014, the FBI reports crime is down 32% in Springfield.  Commissioner Barbieri strongly believes in getting the police officers out of the station and into the community, and the need to stay ahead of the curve with crime analysis and technology.

“I am looking forward to even better years to come, working towards continued success in making Springfield a great place to live, work, be entertained, and invest in economic development,” said Barbieri,  “I cannot wait to see everyone on Friday, November 24th.”

The parade will kick off on Friday, November 24 at 11:00 a.m. and will include a contingent from the Springfield Police Department, as well as hundreds of marchers, musicians, motorized contingents and balloon wranglers down Main Street from Lyman Street to Locust Street.  Balloons featured in the parade will include the Spirit of Springfield’s own 75-foot inflatable Cat in the Hat, Peppa Pig, Twinkles the Snowman, the American Flag, the MGM Resorts lion and more.  

In addition to Tower Square, the parade is supported by contributions from Smith & Wesson, Springfield Marriott, Massachusetts National Guard, Gleason Johndrow Landscaping, Western Mass News, Chicopee Savings Foundation, Maplegate Rehab, iHeart Radio, MassLive, Springfield Business Improvement District, Springfield Department of Public Works and Springfield Police Department. 

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