Dozens of people lined the streets of downtown Tuscaloosa on Monday night for the 45th annual West Alabama Christmas Parade.
The parade had 103 entries, including floats, decorated vehicles, walking groups, three horse groups, seven marching bands and, of course, Santa Claus.
Last year, the parade, one of the largest Christmas parades in the state, was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite rain during the day, the weather cleared up for the parade's return Monday night with temperatures in the 50s and breezy conditions.
Before the parade, a tree lighting ceremony was held on the steps of the Tuscaloosa County Courthouse, featuring Tuscaloosa County Probate Judge Rob Robertson as master of ceremonies and performances by the Westwood Elementary Singers and the Alabama Blues Project.
Nancie Blewitt, Jheovanny Gomez and Pam Parker, the parade's grand marshals, flipped the switch and lit the Christmas tree in front of the courthouse.
The theme of this year's parade was “Super Heroes Celebrate Christmas.”
The parade featured 27 entries in the judged category. Here are the winners:
• Best float: The Legacy Connection earned first place and the Alabama Blues Project finished second
• Decorated Vehicle: First place went to Dockworx Marine Construction and second place went to Ballard Concrete
• Walking Group: The Holt Elementary Ironettes earned first place
• Marching Band: American Christian Academy earned first place, while Northridge High School earned second place
• Best Overall Award: Bars and Stripes Gym
WVUA 23 will re-broadcast the the parade in its entirety on at 10 a.m. on Saturday.
This article originally appeared on The Tuscaloosa News: West Alabama Christmas Parade returns to Tuscaloosa after hiatus