More floats wanted for ‘Parade of Lights’

With the annual “Parade of Lights” only a week away, the local Business Improvement Association is hoping to get as many participants as possible.
BIA co-ordinator Patti Anderson said yesterday she’s had eight people, plus some perennials like the Fort Frances Fire Department, confirm their participation so far in this year’s parade, which is slated for Friday, Dec. 2 at 6 p.m.
The route will follow Scott Street from the Shevlin wood yard to Central Avenue.
“I’m hoping to get a lot more. I’d like to have as many as I can. Anybody who wants to put [one] in can do so,” Anderson remarked.
“I’m finding out, though, because it’s on a Friday this year, we’re finding it doesn’t give people that extra day to work on their floats,” she noted.
“It might reduce the number of floats, but I hope not,” she added. “It would probably be a good idea to work on those floats this weekend.”
Anyone wanting to put a float in this year’s parade can contact Anderson at 275-9774.
But registration isn’t absolutely necessary, she noted, saying participants can just show up at the Shevlin wood yard prior to the parade to line up.
Something new to the parade this year is that Canada Post will be collecting letters to Santa during the event.
“I was contacted by Anthony Smaha, the new branch manager here, and he was telling me in Winnipeg the postal carriers go alongside Santa’s float and collect letters to Santa and hand kids candy canes, and [wondered] if they [could] do it here this year.
“I said, ‘Sure. Cool. No problem. We’re game for everything,’” noted Anderson.
Children who want to write letters to Santa, and have Canada Post deliver them, should address them to: Santa Claus, North Pole, H0H 0H0.
Every kid who sends a letter is assured a response, noted Anderson.
As in past years, B•93 FM and the local Salvation Army will be leading the parade in order to collect non-perishable food items, toys, and money donations for the Christmas hamper program.
Meanwhile, the BIA’s annual “Lunch with Santa” will be held Saturday, Dec. 3 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. at Warp 9. Kids can get their photo taken with Mr. and Mrs. Claus, and a bite to eat, for $2.
Parents are encouraged to bring their own cameras, but those who don’t can buy pictures of their child with Santa for $2 each.
There also will be a mailbox there from Canada Post for kids to mail their letters to Santa.
In related news, the BIA will bring an “old-time Christmas feel” to the downtown area on Dec. 9-10 with something special for shoppers who venture out to Scott Street on those days.
For instance, the BIA will be giving out hot cocoa while on the Saturday, Diane Maxey and her choraliers will be filling Scott Street with festive songs.
Anderson also noted the BIA has put up its new Christmas decorations on the 100-300 blocks of Scott Street. She added the public should realize the decorations are purchased by the BIA, not the town.
And to coincide with the holiday shopping season, a daily draw for $100 in gift certificates will be held at B•93 FM starting Thursday, Dec. 1.
Participating businesses will have a poster in their windows, letting customers know that they can drop by those locations and fill out ballots each day to try and win the draw.
Anderson said she’d like to see more businesses involved in this promotion, adding those interested should call her at 275-9774.