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Bridgeport Celebrates As Barnum Festival Steps Off For Great Street Parade

Ringmaster Jason Julian of Monroe hits the street for the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade on Sunday in Bridgeport.
Ringmaster Jason Julian of Monroe hits the street for the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade on Sunday in Bridgeport. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade.
Bridgeport residents line the streets Sunday to see the Barnum Festival's Great Street Parade. Photo Credit: Skip Pearlman

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — Huge crowds lined the streets of Bridgeport on Sunday afternoon, as the Barnum Festival held its family-themed Great Street Parade, featuring drum corps, drill teams, clowns, floats and giant balloons.

The parade's new route started at Park and Capital avenues, running south on Park Avenue to Seaside Park.

The Barnum Festival was founded in 1948 as a way to build community spirit as well as to honor Bridgeport’s most famous resident, Phineas Taylor Barnum – the world-renowned showman, businessman and community leader. P.T. Barnum was above all an entertainer who celebrated hoaxes and founded the Ringling Bros. and Barnum and Bailey Circus.

The Barnum Festival celebrates this great showman with a celebration from mid-May through June. In true Barnum tradition, a ringmaster is appointed each year to entertain the crows, while also promoting the Greater Bridgeport region.

This year's ringmaster is Jason Julian of Monroe, a longtime Barnum Festival volunteer. His father, Andrew, serve as the festival’s leader 35 years ago.

“I remember the parade and the other events, and how much people enjoyed them,’’ Julian said. “I remember seeing how excited people were in the floats in the parade. I still see volunteers from when he was the Ringmaster, and they’re still volunteers. The relationships that develop from the Barnum Festival last a lifetime.”

The Great Street Parade is the culmination of the Barnum Festival. The final weekend of events also included Barnumpalooza, with food, drinks and music at Seaside Park; a Pops Concert at Seaside Park and fireworks at Seaside Park.

Daily Voice produced this article as part of a paid Content Partnership with our advertiser, The Barnum Festival

We are highly selective with our Content Partners, and only share stories that we believe are truly valuable to the communities we serve.

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