Big weekend in Nevada City: Constitution Day |

Big weekend in Nevada City: Constitution Day

The 44th Annual Constitution Day Parade through the downtown historic district tops a full weekend of special events Saturday and Sunday in Nevada City.

Nevada City’s Constitution Day Parade has been a local tradition since 1967 and is reported to be the oldest and largest Constitution observance in western America. The theme for this year’s event is “Celebrating Volunteers.”

The 2 p.m. Sunday parade features more than 80 entries including seven marching bands, the Sacramento Kings Dance Team, the Ophir Prison Marching Band and the Famous Marching Presidents of Nevada City.

The community parade also features floats, fire trucks, veteran’s groups, classic vehicles, equestrians, dance groups, Keystone Kops, clowns, politicians and more.

Grand marshals are George and Pat Harper of Nevada City, who have produced the Constitution Day Parade every year since 1989 and are being honored by the Nevada City Constitution Day Commission.

Other weekend activities include the popular Civil War reenactments in Pioneer Park. An estimated 200 Union, Confederate and civilian participants are expected. Reenactments are scheduled at 1 and 4 p.m. on Saturday and at 11 a.m. on Sunday.

Everyone is invited to join the reenactors and partake in a special Pancake Breakfast at Seaman’s Lodge in Pioneer Park both Saturday and Sunday from 7 to 10:30 a.m. Cost is $6 per person.

The annual Gold Country Duck Race sponsored by the 49er Breakfast Rotary Club of Nevada City will be held on the rapids of Deer Creek (at the bottom of Broad Street) from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday. This year’s theme is “KenDucky Derby” and ticket-holders have a chance at the $5,000 first prize and many other prizes.

Saturday evening, the Nevada County Concert Band performs in a free outdoor open-air concert at Pine and Commercial streets in the downtown historic district. The 90-minute concert begins at 5:30 p.m.

Also on Saturday evening is the Classic Car and Hot Rod Cruise-In on Broad Street. Hours are 5:30 to 8 p.m.

Nevada City is known for its classic small town spirit and unique events. With an official population of just 3,001, Nevada City swells to thousands more on Constitution Day.

Celebrants should plan to arrive about an hour before parade time to get a good vantage point along the parade route. Sunday parade-goers may park for free at the Nevada County Government Center on Highway 49 and ride an event shuttle to the downtown parade. All-day fares (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) are $3 per individual or family, and free to those in historical costume and youth 12 and under.

For those unable to be present, the event will be broadcast live (Channel 11 in Nevada City and Grass Valley and Channel 16 in South Nevada County and live streaming at, through a cooperative effort of Nevada County Television (NCTV) and Touchdown Productions.

The event is presented by the Nevada City Constitution Day Commission, Nevada Lodge No. 13, F.&A.M. and the 49er Breakfast Rotary Club of Nevada City, with financial support from many community businesses, individuals and organizations.

For more information and a complete weekend schedule of events, contact the Nevada City Chamber of Commerce, 132 Main Street, Nevada City. Call the chamber at (530) 265-2692 or (800) 655-NJOY or see

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