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Ninety-six groups are spending today putting the final touches on floats and performances for Saturday’s Historic Downtown Wilson Christmas Parade.
“Imagination Station is bringing a tropical ecosystem home to snakes, lizards and birds from far off shores,” said Susan Kellum, downtown marketing and communication coordinator.
The theme of this year’s event is Santa and his elves feeling a “Tropical Holiday” coming on, so new participant Imagination Station Science and History Museum is exemplifying the theme with its float.
Other newcomers include Rock Ridge Volunteer Fire Department, Springfield Middle School’s chorus and Barton College athletics with the football team and cheerleaders.
“United States Submarines Veterans will be bringing half of a submarine, which is always a fan favorite. The Loyal Leisure Club ‘ladies in pink’ will be returning as one of 14 performance stops.”
The parade kicks off at 11 a.m. and runs along Nash Street from Whitehead Avenue to Douglas Street. Barton College President Doug Searcy and first lady Beth Searcy will serve as the grand marshals for the parade. The 50th Miss Wilson, Madelanah Zofia McFarland, also will be in the parade.
Judges will be stationed at the intersection of Nash and Tarboro streets as groups perform for 60 seconds before moving on. There will be six horse groups this year and marching bands from the three public high schools.
The parade will be broadcast live on WCSTV22 on Greenlight and Spectrum. The city also will rebroadcast the parade periodically throughout the holiday season.
“Along with Candyland Christmas on Dec. 7, the Historic Downtown Wilson Christmas Parade serves as a kick-off to the holiday season for the community and a way to show off downtown shops and restaurants during the busiest shopping time of the year,” Kellum said.