LAURINBURG – Rain didn’t diminish the enthusiasm of some parade goers at the city’s annual Christmas parade Saturday afternoon.
The heavy showers let up just before the parade’s 2 p.m. start time and allowed revelers young and old to brave the damp and chilly 51-degree weather to see the event that sets Laurinburg’s holiday season in motion.
Ten members of the Burke and Walters families sat curbside to enjoy a little family time and holiday cheer.
“We’ve been doing this for 15 or more years,” said Jackie Burke. “It’s a way for the family to kick off the holiday together.”
Burke was looking forward to hearing the marching bands while the little ones in the family had other ideas.
Six-year-old Caleb Walters had already written his Christmas letter to Santa and was ready to see the jolly old elf in person while four-year-old Mason Walters was looking forward to seeing some reindeer and “all the cool stuff.”
Others parade goers kept warm in their vehicles to take in the sights of floats, official cars, beauty queens and marchers from church groups, civic organizations, schools and dance troupes.
The parade’s 153 entries left Railroad Street and entertained crowds along the 1.7 mile route from Main Street to Plaza Road.
Police Chief Darwin “Duke” Williams, Sheriff Ralph Kersey, and Fire Chief Randy Gibson lead the way in official vehicles wishing everyone along the way a Merry Christmas.
Scotland High School’s Color Guard lead the way for Grand Marshal Fred Fox followed up by the Scotland High School Marching Band whose drum line kept up a great performance and kept time along the way.
Audience members expressed joy and excitement over entries that sparked their interest, but the hit of the parade seemed to be the Cascades tissue factory’s float that cascaded rolls of toilet tissue on parade watchers. The early Christmas gifts had some adults and children running into the street to grab a few rolls to take home.
The parade wrapped up with Santa wishing revelers a Merry Christmas and waving to little ones too tired from the thrill of horses, firefighters, marching bands and Christmas carols.
Reach Beth Lawrence 910-506-3169