NEWTOWN, Conn. (WTNH) – On Monday, Newtown honored a tradition of its 60th annual Labor Day Parade. The floats, bands, and marchers stepped off once again for the first time since the start of the pandemic.

Along with them were top political candidates looking to make an impression on voters.

Spectators lined the streets of Newtown for the town’s 60th annual Labor Day parade. The community was thankful to have the longstanding tradition back again.

“We were able to get out, see the community, wave, be happy. We have all these people showing up,” said Gray Frey, Newtown Lion’s Club.

As the only Labor Day parade in the state, the festive, upbeat atmosphere served as a political battleground for incumbents in office and their challengers hoping to appeal to hard-working families in the crowd.

“I have a lot of Republican, Independent, Unaffiliated constituents I’m working just as hard for. It’s a good day to be in Newtown, my district, to be out with regular working people celebrating Labor Day,” said Rep. Jahana Hayes/

“Momentum is on our side. The latest polls show us at a toss-up, the incumbent being here for over four years. It shows that people are ready for a change,” said George Logan, Republican challenger for the 5th District.

This was the first time since 2019 that Newtown has held their Labor Day parade. Their tradition celebrates the end of summer while also celebrating the hard work of blue-collar workers. Political candidates were trying to resonate with that.

“It’s America. It’s under threat, just as Democracy is under threat. Our middle-class working families have greater pressure than ever before,” said Senator Richard Blumenthal.

“Connecticut should be a job-friendly state. We were at one point. Life is unaffordable here due to the burdensome taxes,” said Leora Levy, Republican candidate for U.S. Senator.

Walking with fellow democrats were Governor Ned Lamont and Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz, who is focused on job creation heading into the general election.

“Most important thing I want to do is keep governing, keep the state going. We have good forward momentum, good job opportunity, and good opportunities. That’s what I want to work on, and Susan here for the next two months,” Lamont said.

Gubernatorial candidate Bob Stefanowski is a believer in the state’s undecided voters. He thinks they will surprise a historically blue state.

“The biggest party in Connecticut is unaffiliated. We have a lot of Democrats leaning our way, Independents are ready for change. Democrats have been in charge in Connecticut for 40 years. It’s not getting much better,” Stefanowski said.

With Connecticut races heating up, Newtown’s Labor Day parade was one of the few big political events left before November’s election.

The parade of floats, bands, and marchers stepped off at 10 a.m.. and came to an end near Queen Street.