Lighted parade Friday
Beginning at 5 p.m. Friday, Main Street Washington is inviting people to hit the Washington square and share the holiday spirit as the holiday season kicks off with the 19th annual lighted holiday parade.
While few people have pre-registered for the parade, Main Street Washington director Sarah Sadrakula said she has received many calls from people inquiring where the line-up for the parade will be this year. She believes the parade will top the 27 entries that were in last year’s parade.
“All of our holiday celebrations this weekend start Friday night,” Sadrakula said.
The events begin at 5 p.m. with several service groups giving away hot dogs, hot cocoa and popcorn in Central Park. Sadrakula said that some materials that had been sent to the schools had 4 p.m. listed as the start time, but she confirmed it was 5 p.m. She also said that carolers would be performing in the park.
Other artists will take the stage in the bandshell leading up to the annual parade. Sadrakula said that at 5:30 p.m. the lighting ceremony would begin. Main Street Washington will run a photo booth. Sadrakula said that the photos will be posted later Friday evening or Saturday morning on a Flicker stream and people will be able to download them for free.
Again this year, Main Street is partnering with Washington Relay For Life. Sadrakula said that the Relay committee would give a presentation. She also said that the Washington Choral Society would perform. Two singers from Columbus Junction will sing classical Christmas songs. Little Miss Iowa will perform. Several area people will give speeches. The show will culminate with Santa using magic to light the square, Sadrakula said.
The parade begins at 6 p.m. with the traditional route around the square.
“It is really fun,” Sadrakula said. “It is unique. It is our own mini lighted parade. Every float has to have lights on it and they have to be creative about it.”
She said that none of the floats would be allowed to display Santa, as Santa rides at the end of the parade in his yearly entry into town.
On Saturday, the Jingle Bell Run will be held. Breakfast with Santa runs from 8 to 10:30 a.m. at the United Presbyterian Church. She said the Lions Club will prepare breakfast and elves will make Christmas decorations. Beginning at 9:30 a.m. Santa will ready stories to the children attending. She also said this is small business Saturday and many shops will be open with special holiday deals.
Sadrakula said she was impressed with the turnout to the shop and stroll event that was held last Friday. She said that she has received positive feedback from every retailer she has spoken with. She said the stores were busy.
“I was happy to see how many cars we had downtown and all the people in those stores,” she said.