MacArthur Road 75th celebration is about to begin
Over the next several days, MacArthur Road will be lined with more than 150 banners celebrating its 75th anniversary.
Once a two-lane road connecting Egypt to Allentown, MacArthur Road has been transformed over the years to six lanes and is recognized as the prime commercial hub in the region with shopping malls, stores of every persuasion and a wide selection of restaurants.
The township will officially kick off the celebration at the April 10 meeting of the board of commissioners.
The ordinance establishing MacArthur Road was officially proclaimed April 13, 1942, in tribute to World War II Army General Douglas MacArthur.
A gala to begin the yearlong festivities is set for April 22 at Whitehall Mall. The event will recognize businesses that have been part of MacArthur Road from its inception.
Each month through November, there will be events recognizing the road’s anniversary.
The celebration is a project of the Whitehall Township Industrial and Commercial Development Authority in partnership with the township administration. A volunteer committee — comprised of township officials, business owners or employees, residents and organization members — has been working on plans for the 75th anniversary over the past two years.
The history of MacArthur Road dates back to the late 1700s, when orchards and farms lined the rural road. As the years passed, the stretch became known as Seventh Street Pike, or Pike, since it connected to Seventh Street in Allentown.
Banners, with the motto “Pride, Progress, Patriotism,” were purchased for MacArthur Road by area businesses. They are expected to remain in place after the 75th celebration is concluded.