The weather was very accommodating on Saturday, November 20th for our club’s presentation of the 41st addition of the annual Battle Creek Christmas Parade. Due to COVID issues the parade was not held last year, but our club was back in stride for this year’s event and although the parade entries were down slightly, the community came out in droves to witness the spectacular event. With the theme for this year: “Come celebrate our Christmas: A Tribute to Our Essential Workers”, many floats bore messages listing such occupations as nurses, doctors, truck drivers, police, firefighters and more. This year’s Grand Marshall was designated posthumously to long time club coordinator, Jim Demarest, who passed away last December. Stepping in to fill his shoes was his daughter, Stephanie Cornish, with help from her husband Zack. Numerous club members assisted for the event under the club leadership of Duncan Bailey, Dr. Gary Gymer and John Sims, Sr. Under the supervision of new club member Crystal Florence, for the first time in a number of years, our club created and entered a float in the parade.
Entry winners for the various categories are the following: The International Award was won by Republic services, which is judged on the best use of holiday lighting. The Judges Award was won by The Misfits Car Club, which is judged on the best non-commercial entry relative to the interpretation of the theme. The Sweepstakes Award was won by The Oaks at Northpointe Woods, for their best commercial entry of the interpretation of the theme. The Grand Marshall Award was won by Jaqua Realtors, which was judged on the best overall entry. The President’s Award was won by Girl Scout Troop 80247 for their most unique interpretation of the theme. The Fantasy Award was won by Caines Concrete, which is judged on the best use of music and/or animation. The Thad Harding Memorial Award went to Grandma and Grandpa Built a Float in recognition of their parade longevity.
Pictured below are the parade winners plus a collection of other entries, participants and Optimist club members who helped in making our parade another successful event.
On Saturday, November 23 our club held its 40th annual Christmas Parade. The weather was great and the community supported the event with a great turnout. The Grand Marshall for this year’s parade was local historian and artist, Kurt Thornton. The theme of the parade this year: “A Postcard Christmas” was relative to Mr. Thornton’s book on the history of Battle Creek postcards. Due to renovation of the downtown Heritage Tower, the parade took slightly different route this year. There were 79 entries in this year’s parade, including 3 local High School marching bands. A special thanks goes out to Jim Demarest for again chairing the event and also to club members Dr. Gary Gymer, Duncan Bailey and John Sims Sr. who have worked every parade since the initial event 40 years ago.
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