Tarboro’s Christmas Parade will bring holiday cheer to spectators and residents along Main Street when it rolls out at 2 p.m.
The parade boasts a lineup of 78 entries, including bands from SouthWest Edgecombe High School, SouthEast Halifax High School and Tarboro High School, eight area fire departments, and bringing up the rear, Santa Claus, sponsored by Piggly Wiggly.
“We put Mr. Pig on the float with Santa Claus. He’ll be doing a ride-along,” said Kenny Honeycutt, owner of Piggly Wiggly.
Tarboro Mayor Donald Morris is the parade’s grand marshal. He will ride in the parade in town councilman Al Hull’s convertible.
“I always look forward to the Christmas parade every year,” Morris said. The homemade floats and the music from the bands are the parts of the parade that he looks forward to the most.
People’s minds turn toward Christmas shopping and decorating right after Thanksgiving, but to Morris, the Christmas parade is the “icing on the cake” for the Christmas season.
“It just really gets people in a better frame of mind for the Christmas spirit,” Morris said. Adding to the Christmas atmosphere are the white lights on the old trees lining Main Street, which Morris considers “one of the prettiest Main Streets in North Carolina.”
Bleachers have been set-up for spectators on the Town Common and John Moore will once again serve as master of ceremonies.
The presenting sponsor of this year’s parade is Ainsley Construction. Providence Bank and Keihin Carolina Systems Technologies are co-sponsoring a professional float for the Distinguished Young Women of Edgecombe County.
“We are a community bank, therefore, we like to sponsor community events, and the Christmas parade is one of them,” said John Dew, vice president of Providence Bank. “It [the parade] gets people in the Christmas spirit. It also brings people downtown to support businesses.”
For Dew, the best part of the parade is the marching bands. Band sponsors are Anderson Agency, Doug Henry Chevrolet, Ronnie Ellis, SIMS Metal Management and Suddenlink.
Parade participants should be in line no later than 1:30 p.m. on Sunday and must check in with parade staff at the Martin Middle School gymnasium parking lot between 12:15 and 1:30 p.m. Participants should have riders already on the parade vehicle or trailer prior to check-in.
Additionally, no parking will be allowed on Main Street from the 100 block through the 600 block either before or during the parade and the following streets will be closed to traffic – Main and St. Andrew, Main and Granville, Pitt and St. Andrew, Pitt and St. Patrick, Pitt and St. David.