Right after seeing the big banner on the street promoting the Holiday Light Parade, I had incessantly badgered Kyle into taking me to my very first Christmas event in the USA. I have always loved parades and since this one was right in town, I didn’t dare miss it for all excuses in the world.
But of course, this is not New York. Not a Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. No television crew. Just a simple Williamston parade of floats, cars and trucks with kids and adults smiling and waving semi-cheerfully, and a short song-and-dance performance from Williamston High’s Guys and Dolls actors. Some participants threw candies on the street and since it was dark and I could always pass as a 12-year-old, I unabashedly picked up two lollipops. One for me and one for Kyle. See? I thought of him too.
I didn’t get to take a lot of pictures because my humble iPhone camera is not good at taking night pictures. However, I managed to get some shots of adorable Christmas-decorated floats, a llama, and the much-awaited VIPs, Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus! They were at the very last of the motorcade to signal the beginning of Christmas celebrations.
Santa Claus was clearly still old-fashioned as he and company were pulled by a horse-drawn carriage – no, not reindeer, sad to say. I wouldn’t have minded it as it would be ridiculous if he came in on a glittering spaceship. It was just anti-climatic because the vehicles before him paraded like a procession of lights and then suddenly, at the most important part of all, boom! Darkness came.
The parade ended with the lighting of the giant Christmas tree, which Kyle and I didn’t go up close to anymore because the nearby dollar store was so tempting. It was a great night, not very cold, and I had a hot cup of Starbucks peppermint mocha to warm me up better.
It was not a grand parade with giant balloons, marching bands or celebrities. The participants were mostly students, people from the community, and sponsoring companies I hadn’t heard of until then. But would I still go to next year’s parade again? Without a doubt, yes! It would be great to herald the start of Christmas with a tradition of going to the Holiday Light Parade. And maybe next year, I’d run into more familiar faces in the crowd.