With Christmas now less than a month away, the holiday season in Fort Frances officially will kick off tomorrow with the 52nd-annual “Parade of Lights.”
The lineup will start up at 3 p.m. at the old CN station.
If they so choose, people with floats will be able to stay warm inside the building.
Hot chocolate and coffee will be available there before the parade, courtesy of Gano Excel Canada rep Lori Delbo.
Float judging will take place at 4 p.m., with the parade getting underway by 5.
The route will run south on Central Avenue, turn east onto Scott Street, and then proceed through the downtown area to the Memorial Sports Centre.
Parade watchers are asked to avoid parking along Scott Street during the parade and instead park on the side streets.
Canada Post once again will have its mail truck out and postal carriers will be collecting children’s letters to Santa during the parade, so bring along those wish lists.
As well, parade-goers are reminded to bring non-perishable food items and cash donations as the B93•FM float once again will be collecting for the local Salvation Army’s food bank.
It already looks as if the parade will sport a sizable line-up.
Brenda Kellar of Causeway General Insurance Brokers Ltd., which is organizing and sponsoring the parade this year, said yesterday that 21 floats have registered so far and she wouldn’t be surprised if more show up tomorrow afternoon during the line-up.
Those entering floats are reminded to do their best to make them as festive and bright as possible.
Prizes will be awarded in five categories: best church or school group float ($75), best non-profit organization float ($75), best business float ($75), best recreational group float ($75), and best decorated individual ($25).
Those who enter floats can give out candy along the way but for the sake of safety, they must hand it out to parade-watchers (not throw it out to them).
Co-organizer Robin Payeur said some volunteers have signed up to help with the parade, but more are encouraged to do so—and even are welcome to show up early tomorrow afternoon before the parade lineup.
“The more, the merrier,” she remarked, noting high school students especially are encouraged to lend a hand and get credit for those mandatory volunteer hours needed to graduate.
Volunteer jobs could vary from helping with the lineup to standing at the intersections to put up and remove barricades to walking along the parade route making sure youngsters are safe.
In related news, the Fort Frances Museum will hold children’s cookie decorating from 2-6 p.m. tomorrow.
Apple cider and hot chocolate also will be served.