Springfield police commissioner to lead 2017 Parade of Big Balloons

Parade of Big Balloons a Springfield tradition for more than 25 years

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Springfield Police Commissioner John Barbieri will lead the Parade of Big Balloons down Main Street next month.

The Commissioner was named the 2017 parade Marshall during a ceremony at Tower Square Monday morning.

Since Barbieri was made commissioner in 2014, the FBI reports crime is down 32% in Springfield.

The commissioner told 22News, he strongly believes in getting police officers out of the station and into the community.

“Above and beyond getting the award, what it represents to me is that Springfield, we’ve crossed a tremendous boundary,” Barbieri said. “A gap between the police and citizens, which we’re seeing is a nationwide problem.”

The parade of Big Balloons, which has been a Springfield tradition since 1991, steps off at 11:00AM on November 24th.