Towns across Burke County are getting ready to celebrate the Christmas season with festive parades. Some parades still have room for additional participants.
The parades include:
Valdese Christmas Parade
Valdese will hold its annual Christmas parade at 10 a.m. Saturday. The parade route will begin at the corner of Church and Main streets and will continue to Morgan Street, said Morrissa Angi, director of community affairs for the town of Valdese. The parade will be led by NC Rep. Hugh Blackwell, who was recently named grand marshal.
Those who would like to join in the parade must submit an application by Wednesday by visiting bit.ly/3rzu0aD. Participants will assemble at Valdese Elementary School on Church Street. Staff members from the Valdese Public Works Department will line up participants in order.
Angi said the parade will include professional floats from local industries, local fire trucks, bands and more. Santa Claus will usher in the grand finale.
Since the event is being held outdoors, town officials will not enforce any COVID-19 safety protocols, but it is encouraging people who watch the parade to take proper precautions.
“We recommend attendees wear masks as they deem appropriate,” Angi said. “Social distancing is encouraged.”
She invited everyone in the community to come out to see the parade.
“Kick off the Christmas season in Valdese by celebrating with friends and family,” Angi said. “Weather looks warm and clear for Saturday, so we hope to have a great crowd join us!”
Drexel Christmas Parade
The 2021 Drexel Hometown Christmas Parade will take place at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 11 on Main Street in Drexel.
People interested in participating in the parade should submit an application through the town hall office or online at ci.drexel.nc.us, according to Sherry Dula, the town clerk.
“Once they sign up with their application, we will give them the packet with the parade map and all the instructions for lineup that morning,” Dula said.
Participants will gather at the R.O. Huffman Center at 700 N. Main St. The parade will begin at the center and end just before the railroad tracks on South Main Street. Each street coming into the parade route will be blocked off with vehicles and personnel.
This year’s parade will feature a variety of entries.
“We have several area church entries, fire departments, elected officials, Burke County Sheriff, Register of Deeds, antique cars and the Shriner Gators are supposed to be joining us,” Dula said. “Two bands are scheduled to appear, and some business entries. Instead of a grand marshal this year, the town is sponsoring a 9/11 Memorial Float to commemorate the 20-year anniversary of the tragic loss of so many lives, including one of our very own, Lt. Cmdr. Eric Cranford, in the Pentagon tragedy. And as with all parades, Santa and the elves will be bringing up the end of the parade.”
Town officials encourage people to practice social distancing and other coronavirus safety protocols.
“We do want to bring our community together for some Christmas cheer amid all the COVID-19,” Dula said.
For more information on the Drexel Christmas parade, contact Scott Dula, parade director, at 828-443-7047.
Hildebran Christmas parade
The 2021 Hildebran Christmas parade has been cancelled, according to the town’s website, hildebrannc.com.
Staff writer Tammie Gercken can be reached at email@example.com.