Nation Valley News and Storm Internet Services partner with Parade of Lights for live-stream of the annual community event

A side view of the Heritage House Spa's winning float in last year's Parade of Lights.

WINCHESTER – The North Dundas Parade of Lights is coming up fast, and this year is shaping up to be even more fun than ever.

It all takes place on Saturday, December 7, starting with the Vendor & Trade Show at the Joel Steele Community Centre, upstairs at the arena, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tables are sold out, and with the variety of vendors registered, you’re bound to find something for everyone on your Christmas list. A complete list of vendors is available on the Parade’s Facebook page and website. Admission is free. Community Living Dundas County will be serving lunch in the canteen, and the fare includes a giant bake sale for shoppers with a sweet tooth. As well, volunteers will be collecting donations for Community Food Share, and Parade of Lights toques will be available for sale at a cost of $10 each. Toques are also available at Simply Baked Catering, the Town Vintner and the Township of North Dundas office in Winchester, and at Mike Dean’s in Chesterville.

Bring the kids and get a photo with Santa! Margaret Link Photography is offering a 4×6 picture in a folio for $12, and kids also receive an advent calendar, courtesy of Foodland. Santa will be available for pictures from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and again from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Keep the shopping fun going by heading downtown to see what Parade Day sales our local merchants have to offer.

The Dundas County Players will be performing an interactive version of Aladdin from 2–4 p.m. at the Old Town Hall. Admission is free.

Free family entertainment is being organized; location to be determined. If anyone would like to offer voluntary entertainment (approximately 20–30 minutes), please contact a committee member.

The Parade of Lights begins at 7 p.m. at the Township Office and winds its way through town. For those unable to venture out to see it, you can view it on Facebook as Nation Valley News will be live streaming the event, in partnership with Storm Internet Services. 

The organizing committee is looking to fill some important volunteer jobs. 

Do you like entertaining a crowd? We’re looking for an emcee—or two—to keep the crowd entertained at the main corner and announce the floats as they pass by. We provide the list of floats, but the jokes, impromptu caroling, and whatever else needed to keep the crowds entertained is up to the person/people with the mic. If you would like to take on this important role, please contact a committee member.

We’re also looking for people who will be watching the parade who would like to help with crowd control. These volunteers will be asked to wear a vest (available from the Township Office) and will assist with keeping the crowd clear of the floats, especially at the corners, and will communicate to the committee members should a float break down or any other issue arises.

For those who are lining the streets to view the parade, Sweet Corner Park will live up to its name with a variety of tasty treats available for purchase. Enjoy a Beavertail, a refreshment from the concession stand run by the Therien Jiu Jitsu and Kickboxing Special Events Committee, or pick up a box of fresh French fries at the Fries for Charity stand, which will be run by the Downtown Revitalization Committee. The benefit of this year’s Fries for Charity is still to be determined.

We ask that parade participants communicate their float location to their teams, as the volunteers cannot always remember where each float was parked. If you plan to leave your float at the township office, please don’t unhitch. Have another vehicle with you, and check in with a volunteer before you leave (volunteers will arrive at 2 pm). Space near the front of the parade is on a first-come, first-served basis, unless verified with the parade committee beforehand. We also ask that float drivers attempt to not create gaps between the floats during the parade. 

If you have kids on your float, make sure to get there early and watch for Santa. The jolly old elf has told us he will be arriving early to meet with some of the kids on the floats, as they don’t otherwise have a chance to see him. 

Floats are automatically entered in our annual Float Contest. 

The categories are:

  • Best Business Float
  • Best Non Profit Float 
  • Most Lights
  • Best Decorated Farm Equipment
  • Best Overall
  • People’s Choice (voting takes place on the parade website following the parade; floats will be added as soon as possible after the parade ends)
  • Best Animal Float
  • Most Original

Prizes are gift baskets filled with local goods.

As always, we need volunteers to help make parade day run smoothly! If you would like to help out, please email info@northdundasparadeoflights.ca or PM the parade committee on Facebook. 

For more information, visit the website at northdundasparadeoflights.ca or like us on Facebook.

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