The Duncan Banner
If you’re looking for a Christmas parade to be a part of, Stephens County has at least four to choose from.
In fact, for the ambitious, you could even join in almost all of them. Marlow starts the festivities off with their parade at 10 a.m. Saturday. The Marlow VFW Post 2888 and American Legion Post 9 Color Guard will lead the procession on Main Street to First Street.
“We’ve got pretty much everything in place and volunteers are ready to go,” said Debbe Riddley, president of the Marlow Chamber of Commerce, which sponsors the parade.
The lineup for the event will be in the area around the high school, with entries arriving by 9 a.m. Horses and horse drawn entries are to unload at the new City Hall area at 119 S. 2nd. These entries will be escorted as a group to the lineup area just prior to the start of the parade.
Several awards will be given to those who enter the parade such as trophies for the best truck, best original vehicle, best Christmas decorated and best modified vehicle. Rosette ribbons will also be given to the best decorated bicycles for children seven and under, as well as eight and over.
Best Original Tractor and Most Unique Tractor will also receive trophies along with first and second places in the Individual Horse Division and Horse Drawn Division. Entries such as go-carts, three-wheelers, golf carts and lawn mowers will have a chance at Best Decorated Motorized Off-road Vehicle.
Cash prizes from $25 to $100 will be awarded to the top four floats in the parade.
Although the Marlow Chamber of Commerce doesn’t require pre-registration, it’s recommended that participants contact the Chamber office at 580-658-2212 to find out where to line up their entries.
The Marlow Lions Club will serve a pancake breakfast from 7-11 a.m. at the Lions Den, 223 W. Main, for a pancake breakfast with all the fixings. Tickets are available from members of the Marlow Lions Club. Proceeds from this annual event are used for various community and charitable projects.
Velma’s Christmas parade will be at 11 a.m. Saturday on Main Street, with lineup beginning at 10 a.m. at the east end of town near the E&S Feed Store. Prizes will be awarded for first through third place for antique cars and for floats.
“We’re getting ready,” said Shawn Enloe, Velma Mayor. “We wish everyone will come out.”
Velma’s annual Community Dinner will be at 6 p.m. Saturday in the V-A school cafeteria. The Town of Velma provides the meat entrees and residents are requested to bring a side dish and dessert.
Additionally, Velma adds more to the fun by hosting a house lighting contest Friday evening. Residents who want their decorations judged are to leave their lights on from 6-11 p.m. Friday. Winners will be announced at the Community Dinner.
The following weekend, Duncan continues with holiday cheer with the Duncan Main Street Christmas Parade at 3 p.m. Dec. 14 on Main and Walnut streets. Last year was a record breaking number of entries for Duncan and this year looks like it could beat it.
“We have 98 entries already,” said Tammy Johnson, Main Street director, on Wednesday. Since then, entries have surpassed the 100 mark. “The theme is Main Street is Sweet and we’re hoping people’s floats will represent candy.”
All pre-entries are to call Main Street at 580-252-8696 to receive a number. Those numbers will be picked up at the registration table at 12th and Main beginning at noon which will allow them to be judged. Trophies will be given to first through third places in float, special interest, antique car and business categories.
Finally, Comanche rounds out the schedule with its parade at 7 p.m. Dec. 14. Organized by the Comanche Chamber of Commerce, this parade features something none of the others do — lights.
Because of the late hour, the skies are dark by the time Comanche’s floats make their way from Comanche High School down Highway 53 through Main Street. Parade marshals this year are Ron Baldwin and Don Strange.
“It’s going well; I get a call or two everyday,” said Bruce Akins, president of the Comanche Chamber. “Everyone is excited and we expect to have a good parade.”
Close to the beginning of the parade, there will be the annual fireworks show, courtesy of the City of Comanche. Sponsors for this year’s parade are Delberts Supermarket, Thompson Pharmacy, Bartling Insurance, Comanche Pharmacy, Comanche Family Care, Comanche Seed and Grain, Elmer Skeen Family, Michael’s Paint and Body, Comanche Women’s Club.
Cars and volunteer fire department floats should line up around 4:30 p.m. at Comanche High School so they can be judged before the parade. First prize in both categories will receive $200, second place will get $100 and third place will be awarded $50.
Of course, all four parades will feature the jolly man in the red suit, courtesy of the sponsors and organizers. It is requested that there not be any “impostor” Santas on other parade entries.