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Community Roots: Selections from the Local Legacies Project
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Virginia Tech bank frequently marches in the parade
Virginia Tech's "Highty Tighties" are frequent participants in the parade. Photo: Carolyn Gay

Buena Vista Labor Day Festival

Buena Vista's Labor Day Festival dates to the mid-1960s, when the city bought the Glen Maury farm, planning to convert it to a community park. To celebrate the work done by the many volunteers who cleared the land, built picnic shelters, and hiking trails, a Labor Day parade was organized to march from downtown Buena Vista to new Glen Maury Park. It attracted thousands of people from the region; its success ensured the event would become a Buena Vistan tradition. Local politicians invited governors and Senators (both state and national) to participate, and the festival began to serve as the kickoff for Virginia's fall political campaigns -- giving rise to Buena Vistan conventional wisdom: "It you're a candidate and you're not in Buena Vista on Labor Day, you won't win the election." Project documentation comprises a report, photographs with accompanying descriptions, a collection of parade programs, several videotapes, a campaign brochure depicting the parade on its cover, and newspaper coverage from 1971-1999.

Originally submitted by: Bob Goodlatte, Representative (6th District).

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The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

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