Hundreds gather in Pawling for shortest parade in the country (VIDEOS)

A step dancer entertaining the crowd before the start of the parade.

PAWLING – “America’s Shortest Parade” returned to Pawling this past weekend to the delight of hundreds of attendees and participants.  Emceed by Pawling’s own Dave Gamache, the seventh annual event included a DJ, live music, and the 223-foot parade down Broad Street.

A performance by several step dancers under the tutelage of Ashley Gilnack from the Farrell School of Irish Step Dancing entertained the crowd in front of O’Connor’s pub before the parade Grand Marshalls, Town Supervisor Jim Schmitt, and his brother Robert led local and state politicians, community groups, and fire departments down Broad Street.  Organizers told Mid-Hudson News that the grand marshals, owners of Schmitt Excavation and Development, were chosen based on their collective commitment and the support they have shown to the entire Pawling community.

According to Henrique Schaber, owner of Pawling Family Quick Stop, “The parade began when Manuel “Kevin” O’Connell and Juan Hughes were sitting in a pub and, as a dare, decided to have a parade.”  Schaber said “It started as a parade of seven guys walking down the street, with me as the grand marshal.”

The parade has grown substantially in attendance over the years and it serves as a tremendous boost to the businesses in Pawling on parade day.

Video clip of the beginning of the 2023 parade:


Scroll down for video of the Farrell School Dancers: