The Ocean County Columbus Day Parade is a facet of our local community with hundreds gathering yearly in celebration every October. Once again they are looking to see who will be bestowed with the honor of parade Grand Marshall.

Columbus Day parade in Seaside Heights (Ocean County Sheriff's Dept)

The responsibilities for whoever is named Grand Marshall for the 36th annual Columbus Day Parade October 8th of this year includes attending various fundraising efforts from mid-April thru October and leading the parade itself.

Grand Chairman of the Ocean County Columbus Day Parade Committee Michael Blandina says in order for it to run as successful as it has, a lot of planning is needed months in advance including fundraisers to afford the parade activities.

"We need 15-16 permits each year, we have to have the funds to pay for the bands, floats, the entertainment, tents, tables and chairs," said Blandina.

He says the bill for a single float alone runs them about $1,600.00.

If your looking to be a Grand Marshall of this parade, then Blandina says there are some credentials you need to have.

"One thing I find in common with all of our past Grand Marshalls is that they all have given back to the community," said Blandina. "They've been involved in several volunteer groups in the county."

He adds that this resume would include being well rounded and having the heart to give back to the community.

"Whether it was involved in certain clubs whose been doing things for children or other events and volunteer groups or organizations in support of their charity," said Blandina.

If you are chosen to become this years Grand Marshall, Blandina says you'd be joining some elite company.

"After 35-years, there's only been 35 people who have done it," said Blandina. "It is an honor and we should be apart of that each year as long as we can be."

When applying he asks for you to include a picture of yourself or the person your nominating as well as a resume and a brief biography.

You can mail in the applications to the Ocean County Columbus Day Parade Committee at 249 Hawaii Drive in Brick Township (08723) or you can email the application to info@columbusnj.org.

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