It's December, and Daytona Beach Shores is ready to get into the holiday spirit.
The annual Daytona Beach Shores Christmas Parade & Event will happen this Saturday, Dec. 4, promising “a day of fun and excitement for all ages” with food trucks, music and a tree lighting at Veterans Park.
“The City of Daytona Beach Shores is proud to host the parade and to welcome the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra for a free concert of holiday music favorites,” said Daytona Beach Shores Mayor Nancy Miller in an email.
The parade will benefit Operation Changing Lives, a local nonprofit organization that provides reconstructive surgeries to disadvantaged patients with severe facial deformities.
“The parade is an annual tradition to kick off the season for the residents, businesses and visitors of Daytona Beach Shores,” said Cherise Graham Wintz, director of events for Operation Changing Lives in an email to The News-Journal. “We’re thrilled to present a festive event with 45 units of marching bands, floats, school clubs, fun surprises and Santa Claus.”
The parade will begin at 2 p.m., leaving from Crabby Joe’s parking lot at 3701 S. Atlantic Ave., traveling north on South Atlantic Avenue (A1A) for about two miles, turning west onto Bellemead Drive and ending at the Shores Community Center, 3000 Bellemead Drive.
“The event has the added bonus of blessing many underprivileged children in our community through toys and funding collected,” Wintz added.
The nonprofit will host a Christmas party for nine local schools on Dec. 11, where organizers will distribute toys collected during Saturday's event. Unwrapped toys can be dropped off at the community center, city hall or public safety department, according to the city.
Food trucks and Christmas music
After the parade, festivities will continue at the community center with entertainment by DJ Dave and “gourmet food” available for purchase from food trucks, including The Big Cheese, A No Root Kitchen, Sandlapper’s Southern Kitchen, Peter John’s Ice Cream, and Betta’s Pizza.
At 4:30 p.m., a quintet from the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra will perform Christmas selections at Veterans Park (just behind the community center). Those attending the event can bring a chair to enjoy the concert.
The celebration will culminate in the traditional tree lighting at the community center at 5:45 p.m.
For more information, call Daytona Beach Shores Recreation at 386-281-3000.
This article originally appeared on The Daytona Beach News-Journal: Daytona Beach Shores Christmas Parade & Event happens Saturday, Dec. 4