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Niska-Day extols town's big birthday

Every now and again it's nice to come together as a community and spend time with neighbors. Niskayuna is holding it's 28th annual Niska-Day celebration this month on Saturday, May 16. This year's celebration centers on Niskayuna's 200th birthday.

It's a day where we put everything aside and get together and have a good time in the town, said Denise Leader, co-chair of Niska-Day.

This year, activities start at 8 a.m. with a "family fun run" at the Van Antwerp Middle School. The next activity starts at 10 a.m. with the ever-popular Niska-Day parade, which kicks off at St. Helen's Church on Union Street and ends at the St. James Square parking lot around 11:30 a.m. Events will continue for the rest of the day at Craig School on Balltown Road.

"Niskayuna is a wonderful community, and sometimes people live in wonderful communities and don't realize how wonderful they are, so it [Niska-Day] was [created] to raise awareness that this is a fantastic place to live," said Mardy Moore, a former supervisor of the Town of Niskayuna and a co-founder of Niska-Day.

Each year, there is a grand marshal of the parade, which is chosen by the Niska-Day Committee.

"Ed Reilly will be leading that group because he's involved with the historical society," said Leader.

She said that each year the committee tries to pick someone who will enhance the parade's theme.

"He's written some books [about the history of the area] and done a lot of things within the community," said Leader.

She said that there are still families living in the town that are descendents of many generations of Niskayuna residents, and many of them have been asked to ride on the float.

"There are a lot of people who are still here who owned big farms, and their children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren are still living here in some of the homes that their ancestors lived in," said Leader.

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