HIGH SPRINGS – The High Springs Chamber of Commerce-sponsored 2012 Christmas Parade went off without a hitch just after dark at 6 pm, Saturday, Dec. 8. The event, which is in its 16th year, celebrated the theme Charlie Brown Peanuts Christmas.
Floats were judged on lights, sound and scene according to Chamber President Sandra Webb. The first place ribbon was awarded to Matchmaker Realty. Second place was awarded to the High Springs Art Coop and third place was awarded to Copeland’s Quality Construction for the aluminum Ferris wheel constructed out of aluminum over night by Mark Copeland.
Judges for this year’s competition were business owners Bettye Gloskowski and John Gloskowski, and Marsha Repp of Thompson’s Florist.
Parade participants and floats were replete with Christmas lights, Christmas trees, a mini ferris wheel, and, of course, ended with Santa Clause on the City’s new bright, red fire truck. Organizations from Gainesville, Alachua, Ft. White, Lake City, Bell, and High Springs participated with a total of 42 floats to help celebrate the Christmas season in style.
Bands from High Springs Middle School and Santa Fe High School also marched in the parade playing Christmas music and lighting up the night with uniforms complete with twinkling Christmas lights.
Area residents began lining up to watch the parade long before dark. Lawn chairs appeared along the parade route by mid-afternoon to help guarantee visitors the best viewing locations. Downtown businesses stayed open late to accommodate people who might need a hot drink, some fudge or who just wanted to shop before or after the parade.
The parade route began on US 441 at Alice’s Cafe and ended at the City’s Peanuts-themed Christmas tree, located on Railroad Avenue. Children wishing to tell Santa what they wanted for Christmas were encouraged to visit him at the Christmas tree and to also have their photos taken with the jolly old man himself.
“Our churches, schools and bands were all awesome,” said Chamber President Sandra Webb. “We certainly appreciate all of them that helped make this one of the best Christmas parades ever. Unfortunately, our judges could only choose three among all of the fantastic floats as first, second and third place winners. Each church, organization and school went way above the norm with their excellent submissions this year,” she said.
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