A magical Christas parade coming together

Nov. 14—The pieces are coming together for the annual Daviess County Christmas parade on Dec. 3.

"We usually start on it in the latter part of October," said organizer Debbie Neukam in the Washington Mayor's Office. "There is a meeting with the Chamber of Commerce and we get the ball rolling with the general plans concerning the line-up or route."

The route will be the same with the parade organizing at Washington High School, running west on Main Street, north on Meridian, then east on Van Trees back to the high school.

"People don't have to sign up ahead of time, but we like for them to, just so we have a general idea of how many positions we need to be prepared for," said Neukam.

The parade also will have a theme.

"'The Magic of Christmas" is the theme," said Neukam. "We don't require anyone to do anything with the theme, but we like to have one and encourage people to use it."

Neukam says the big thing for the parade is for people to have a good time.

"We want lots of music and lights since it is an evening parade," she said. "We look forward to having people gather and kicking off the Christmas season."

So far, the response of entrants has been pretty good, but experience says that the numbers pick up, as the days close toward the parade date.

"About a week or week-and-a-half before the parade is when we get the majority of the calls," said Neukam.

After fighting with COVID in the community, it appears that a good parade could be in the offing this year.

"We are hoping for a good crowd on Main Street and along the parade route," said Neukam. "We had a great turn out last year and are hoping for the same this year."

Officials say the parade has been in the evening for the last several years and that seems to help bring in the holiday season.

"It has a certain feel with the lights and the evening time, people bundled up and altogether," said Neukam. "It's more festive, more enjoyable and it helps bring the community together."

Several prizes will be passed out to the participants. The Best Overall Entry is the grand prize and comes with a trophy and $200. The Best Commercial Entry receives $150 and a trophy. The Best Non-profit receives $100 and a trophy.

"We also have a window display contest and encourage the downtown businesses to decorate their window with lights," said Neukam. "The best in that one wins $100 and a traveling trophy."

Of course, the guest of honor for the event will be Santa who will arrive at the end of the parade.

"Santa will be at Home Building and Savings after the parade where he will meet with the kids," said Neukam. "There will also be cookies and hot chocolate and candy canes."

People wanting to sign-up to be in the parade should contact either the Washington Mayor's office or the Daviess County Chamber of Commerce.

The parade is set for Dec. 3 with the line-up starting at 5 p.m. and the parade steps off at 6 p.m.