Main Street Home Town Holiday is the title of the town’s annual Electric Light Parade on Main Street, which will be held beginning at 6 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 6. This is the eighth running of the parade since it was started in 2000 by former Main Street coordinator, Karen Greenspoon.
Heading the effort this year is Cathy Boone, main street coordinator, assisted by Cameron Davis, the town’s Tourism and Economic Vitality manager. Boone expects approximately 40 entries. The parade will begin at the rear of Sawmill Crossing and proceed west on Main Street to Green Valley Park.
All of the businesses on Main Street are being urged to be open and decorated with lights. Some will be offering refreshments during the parade.
Along the route of the parade will be announcers Eddie Armer, John and Luann Carpino and former town manager, Fred Carpenter. There will be no judging stand, as all judging will be done prior to the parade in the staging area.
This year there will be additional paved parking in the town lot behind Dr. Blackmore’s Veterinary Clinic, which is accessed off Westerly Drive. Westerly Drive can be accessed from Aero Drive, as Main Street will be closed off.
Looking at the rules for the parade indicates you cannot throw candy or handouts from the floats, and if animals are involved, the entry must furnish “pooper scoopers.”
“We need more volunteers to manage the parade and those interested in helping can call me at 468-6074,” said Boone.
It takes quite a large crew to make the parade a success, so give Boone a call. It only takes a couple hours of your time to be part of this Christmas tradition.
Leading the parade this year will be the youth of the Civil Air Patrol and the parade marshal will be none other than Santa Claus himself.
The girls from Girl Scout Troop 1288 are getting a head start on making their float with a little help from their parents. There are 18 in the troop and they meet regularly at the police department conference room according to leader Monica Enriguez. The girls building the float range in age from 7 to 11, and this is their second year in the parade.
Dress warmly, bring a chair and join in on the town’s annual Christmas celebration.
There is plenty to do around town prior to the annual Electric Light Parade.
Take in the Tamales for Toys program.
Get a new toy (or a few) and take it (or them) to Gerardo’s Italian Bistro from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 6 and enjoy a great homemade tamale dinner, courtesy of the Rim Country’s firefighters.
The annual event is a way to collect new toys (for ages infant to 17) for the Christmas for Kids program that public safety personnel from around the Rim Country present each year to make the holidays happy for everyone. The Payson Fire Department and the Northern Gila County Firefighters Association put on the Tamales for Toys event, with Sam Garcia of the Payson Fire Department supervising the cooking.
In addition to the homemade tamales, there will be beans, chips and a drink served. A sign-up sheet will be available for any leftover tamales as well, for which those interested can call at the end of the event. Donations of cash will also be accepted.
There are lots of holiday craft sales taking place as well.