Christmas parades are coming to town
Christmas is just under a month away, which means it's not only time to ponder what you'll put under the tree, but where you'll sit along the route for your hometown parade. Maggie Valley, Waynesville and Canton are all hosting their annual Christmas processions within a few days of one another — each has its own festive flavor and array of local floats. Here is The Guide's guide to this year's parade season, which kicks this Saturday in Maggie.
Not content to sit on the sidelines? Do you secretly want to be in one of these parades yourself? For Waynesville, you're out of luck, but for Canton and Clyde, there's still time, with details below.
When: 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1
Theme: “Welcome Home for Christmas."
How to enter: Entry forms and rules may be downloaded from the Maggie Valley Police Department website, maggievalleypd.com, with the deadline of Friday morning, Nov. 30. Participants need make their best effort to incorporate the selected theme and/or use traditional Christmas colors (red and green), imagery and decorations. Participants are also encouraged to use music as part of their float or group. All parade entries must arrive at Ghost Town parking lot by 4 p.m. to receive their position and begin lining up for the parade. Judging for the parade will begin at 5 p.m. and participants must be in line by that time to be in consideration.
Parade entrants will proceed along U.S. Hwy. 19, beginning at the Ghost Town parking lot and ending at the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds. This annual festive event features holiday parade groups and floats with vendors selling traditional parade “wares” throughout the evening. Parade participation and entry is free.
This is the time of year when Haywood Christian Ministry and the citizens of Haywood County need the most help. Food donations are critical and in the most demand, specifically flour, sugar and other related cooking items. Organizations and citizens wanting to help may do so at Maggie Valley Police Department and Town Hall beginning Nov. 1 to 30.
New this year, Haywood Christian Ministries, in conjunction with Haywood County Rescue Squad will be collecting all food donations, perishable and non-perishable, along the parade route during the festivities. All food donations benefit Haywood Christian Ministry.
For the first time, the town is also accepting applications from vendors from all states in the Southeast region. Applications can be obtained by calling 926-4950 or printed from www.maggievalleypd.com.
When: 6 p.m. Monday, Dec. 3
Theme: "Dreaming of a White Christmas"
This annual event is sponsored by the town of Waynesville, Waynesville Kiwanis Club and the Downtown Waynesville Association and features more than 100 floats — and Santa, of course. The procession rolls right down Main Street, traditionally with hundreds of people lined along both sides of it. The nonprofit float contest awards are $150 for first place, $100 for second place, and $50 for third place. Commercial winners will receive a commemorative engraved plaque.
For more information, call the Downtown Waynesville Association at 456-3517.
When: 6 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6
Theme: "Christmas in Dixie"
How to enter: Call Denise Holcombe at 235-2760 to check for the deadline and requirements. All entrants are asked to line up no later than 5:45 p.m.
The Canton parade usually has more than 100 entries, and this this year will include four commercial floats, as well. The parade starts on Blackwell Drive and goes all the way through town and back to Blackwell Drive. As is tradition, the parade route is always bursting with people on both sides, all hoping to catch candy — and a glimpse of Santa.