Memorial Day Ceremony and Parade

Founded in 1944 by William (Bill) Wood, the Memorial Day Ceremony and Parade is a long-standing tradition in the City of Rockville. The day starts off with a ceremony remembering those who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms and concludes with the annual parade. Today the parade features more than 50 units including military and community groups, marching units, dance troupes and more. 

Event Info

Monday, May 29, 2023
9 a.m.: Musical Tribute by the Rockville Concert Band and Chorus
9:30 a.m.: Ceremony
10:30 a.m.: Parade Begins
Rockville Town Center

Parade Grand Marshal2023 Memorial Day Parade Grand Marshal Stephen P. Johnson

Each year, the City of Rockville selects a local veteran or active military member to serve as the City's Grand Marshal and lead the festivities. This year's Grand Marshal is Stephen P. Johnson.

Stephen P. Johnson is a historian at the Department of Defense’s POW/MIA Accounting Agency, where he works to provide the fullest possible records and accounting of missing personnel to their families and the nation.

Johnson has been a civilian employee of the Department of Defense since 2010. From 2009 to 2015, he worked in various positions at the Defense Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office. He volunteered for the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy’s Personnel Accounting Consolidation Taskforce in 2014.

He holds a Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, in history from the University of Washington, a Master of Arts degree in history and a doctorate in United States political and cultural history from the University of Maryland, College Park, specializing in constitutional law and political conflict with a minor specialization in European military history of the 1500s-2000s.

Johnson was an enlisted member of the Air Force from 1977-1984, reaching the rank of staff sergeant. He was stationed in South Dakota and the United Kingdom and served as a security specialist, primarily working on the flightline guarding aircraft.

He lives in Silver Spring.


Free parking is available at the Metro lots, City Hall lots and Jury lot.

Paid parking is available for $5 in the Rockville Town Square garage located off of Route 355 or North Washington Street from 7 a.m.-3 p.m. on Monday, May 29. Cash and credit accepted. Regular Town Square parking rates apply at all other times. Accessible Parking is available in the town center garage.

Parade Route and Road Closures

The parade begins at N. Washington Street and Martins Lane, then heads south on N. Washington Street. From there the parade turns left onto Beall Avenue, right on Maryland Avenue through Rockville Town Square and left onto E. Montgomery Ave. See the image to the right for a map of the parade route. 

Roads around the parade route begin closing at 6 a.m. and reopen at 2 p.m. Click the link below to view a full list of road closures and times. 

Road Closures 

Parade Applications

Interested in participating in the parade? Wednesday, April 12, 2023 was the deadline for general parade applications from outside groups so the public application period for the 2023 parade is closed at this time.  

Elected officials and candidates for City of Rockville Mayor and Council office may still submit an Application for Elected Officials & Candidates. Any candidates submitting an application must be certified and submit an application by May 15, 2023.

Application for Elected Officials & Candidates   

Memorial Day Parade Route Map