Christmas Parade, events kick off downtown Thursday
The Graham Chamber of Commerce is kicking off the holiday season Thursday with “A Very Merry Gingerbread Christmas” celebration on the downtown square. The celebration will contain multiple holiday events, including the 2019 Christmas parade and stroll.
The celebration starts Thursday, Dec. 5, with a pictures with Santa event from Mirus Studios at Young County Home and Health, and MBussey photography at The Vogue at 4 p.m. The Christmas stroll follows at 5 p.m., which starts with a children’s kids craft zone at the downtown arch, Toys for Tots booth and the Eastside Church of Christ Senior Choir outside the Ciera Bank building.
At the same time, the First Baptist Church Prime Time Singers will be performing on the Young County Courthouse steps. The Young County Courthouse gazebo will also host the First Presbyterian Kids Music Club at 5:30 p.m.
Hot Chocolicious competition
The third annual Hot Chocolicious competition in front of the Graham Convention and Visitors and Bureau building will be hosted from 5:30-9:30 p.m. Forty-seven students are split into 10 teams for the event which doubles as an educational program for the participants.
The program welcomes students from sixth through eighth grade from Graham Junior High School which are grouped by each grade level. The program serves as entrepreneurship training for the students involved with the basics of how to start and manage a business. Each team creates a hot chocolate business, which is then sold to visitors during the day of the event. Each team picks a chamber member nonprofit organization to donate their proceeds raised from the event.
The lighted Christmas parade finishes the night which has one new addition this year, according to Cruz.
“We are still having a parade (…), but I mentioned the idea of going to a static parade, which means the floats stay still,” she said. “It is still the same route and everything, they just stay stationary and the people move. And some other chambers are doing that and it is becoming more and more popular for lots of reasons, one being that it is safer, the other being that it allows for businesses to interact with the community instead of the drive by. They all want to give out things and they all want to throw things, which is super prohibited.”
De La Cruz said people were concerned the chamber was not going to host the parade after she reached out to gauge interest in the standing parade earlier this year, so the chamber decided to offer entrants the choice of being in the standing or moving parade. The stationary portion of the parade will be down Third St. on the downtown square.
“We already have three signed up to do the stationary, so I am really excited about that because I think people will see what that means, because I think a lot of people couldn’t visualize what that suggestion meant,” she said. “If it doesn’t grow that’s fine. I am not opposed to having the moving parade, I just want to be open to changes also that best serve our community.”
For the full story, see the Saturday, Nov. 30 edition of The Graham Leader.