HRS_moody_Oak Hill

HRS_moody_Oak Hill

Staff reports
Submitted by Richard Moody Columbia-Greene Media on Sat, 07/29/2017 - 10:04 pm

Oak Hill parade aims to bridge community gaps with second year

OAK HILL — In an event meant to bring everyone together, the hamlet of Oak Hill held its second annual parade and festival Saturday.

Saturday was only the second Oak Day parade, but spectators and organizers said the parade was larger and better than it was the year before.

“The parade was fantastic,” said Frank Buddingh, of New Rochelle. “It is growing; it was twice as big this time.”

Buddingh said he loves to visit Oak Hill.

“I think it is because of the informality of the people, that everyone mingles,” he said. “I love you walk down the street and see people selling stuff.”

George Deckers, who has lived in Oak Hill for many years, said he enjoyed the parade.

“It was phenomenal,” he said. “This was the first time I’ve seen everyone coming together. We all have differences of opinion, but that should only help us grow.”

One of the organizers of the parade, Ana Sporer, said there has been animosity between natives of the Oak Hill area and the migrating New York City natives.

“I think the parade is a great idea. This community is struggling and this brings everyone together and that is great,” Sporer said. “Next year we should have more music. I loved the costumes this year, though.”

The parade is a part of the larger Oak Hill Day festival that included food, music and other activities.

Shane Keith, who represented The Yellow Deli in the parade, said the deli uses it as a good opportunity to get involved in the community.

“The parade was nice. We have been in it both years,” Keith said. “We like being involved in our community.”

Amy Housmann, who has lived in Oak Hills only a couple of years, said she loves the event.

“This is to celebrate Oak Hill. I am thrilled it brings people into the hamlet,” Housmann said. “The more the merrier. This is a great community-based event and it is about having fun and freedom.”