- Associated Press - Friday, January 8, 2016

BRISTOL, R.I. (AP) - One of Rhode Island’s biggest and most historic tourist attractions will be changing for the first time since the 1970s.

The Bristol Fourth of July Committee voted Wednesday night to shorten the seaport town’s iconic Independence Day parade by moving its start about a half-mile down Hope Street.

Parade chairwoman Fran O’Donnell says the decision was made after some groups declined to march in the 2016 parade because of its length. The parade’s route stretched 2.4 miles and had remained unaltered since 1975.

O’Donnell insists cost-cutting was behind motivation for the change.

Police Chief Josue Canario says a shorter parade will benefit law enforcement by making it easier for officers to patrol and monitor.

The 2016 parade will be Bristol’s 231st celebration of our nation’s birth.

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