Christmas parade set for Saturday

Dec 5, 2019


photo or infographic by Caleigh Nabors

The Willis Christmas Parade is Saturday at 11:00. Santa will be on the judges stage across from Parmley from noon until one.

The streets of Willis will be filled with Christmas music and holiday cheer as the annual Christmas parade comes to town this Saturday. The theme this year is Winter Wonderland.

“The parade is a long-standing tradition to bring the citizens together to celebrate Christmas,” Don Pope, parade director, said. “It is always free to enter, and there will be free helium balloons at four stations from the folks at Grace International Church.”

The band will march in the parade, providing music for the event. 

“It’s a nice moment to actually be part of the Christmas parade and enjoy the moments of it,” senior Darleni Ramirez said. “I mean it’s like another whole parade from the school one that we participate in.” 

The event is a community wide celebration, starting at 11:00 along Campbell Street.

“I don’t participate in the Christmas parade,” senior Christopher Maldonado said. “But I do enjoy seeing it, especially the band. That basically hypes it up.”

Spending time with the ones you love and enjoying a small town holiday celebration is a perfect way to find holiday spirit. 

“Not only the parade is amazing, but also what they do after the parade which is a small picnic and with a lot of fun events for the whole family,” senior Ariel Guevara said.

Santa will be available for photos from noon until one on the judge’s stage across from Parmley.

“Santa will make his appearance at the end of the parade,” Pope said. “This year since there is no Christmas Festival, Santa will be at the judge’s stage from noon to 1pm taking photos with Santa.”

The parade is always the first Saturday in December. It is an event that many look forward to all year. 

“The whole town gets together, I think that is nice,” junior Dibanhi Miramon said. “It is like a tradition for our town.”

photo or infographic by Charnell Haywood
COMING TO TOWN. Santa made an appearance during the parade. He was also available for pictures at the end of the event.

Parade entertains community, sparks holiday spirit

Charnell Haywood
DECK THE HALLS. Members of the Wildkat band wear their Christmas bling for the parade. The band won Outstanding Marching Band at the parade.
Charnell Haywood
COMING TO TOWN. Santa made an appearance during the parade. He was also available for pictures at the end of the event.
Charnell Haywood
CADETS WITH CLASS. Members of the AFJROTC unarmed exhibition drill team lead by junior Lexi Wagner moves down the street. The group competes in competition throughout the year.
Charnell Haywood
SWEET AND SASSY. Color guard member junior Kasey McGrew marches with the band during the Christmas parade.
Charnell Haywood
YOU’RE A MEAN ONE MR. GRINCH. Winner of the Most Original Entry, the Grinch of Remote Vehicle Diagnostics, spends his time during the parade as the Grinch.
Charnell Haywood
LEADING WITH PRIDE. At the front of the group, senior Dustin Baldwin and Willard lead AFJROTC at the start of the parade. The group won for outstanding marching.

Jingle bells! Jingle bells! Jingle all the way down the streets of Willis. 

The Willis Christmas Parade was Saturday starting on Campbell Street.  The holiday spirit started before the parade started with a local church handing balloons to anyone who wanted one. 

“Christmas is my favorite holiday, so I went for the Christmas theme,” junior Terri Ray said. “In one of the cars there was the Grinch,. It was kinda scary, but I liked it.”

Participants of the parade enjoyed their experience in the parade as they rode around in their Christmas theme. 

“It was really fun to be able to see all the little kids,” senior Ali McNew said. “ I had a reindeer onesie on so kids were pointing, but it was nice to see the whole community come together for one event.”

The weather was definitely on the right side this past weekend for the Christmas parade. 

“I had a great time,” Chef Sandra Jefferson said. “And the weather was perfect. It was a great community involvement activity.”

Seniors enjoy the last route around with their classmates as 2019 wraps up. 

“I enjoyed marching with my friends in the parade for the last time,” senior Hannah Wilson said. 

JROTC made a commitment to be present for the community and show their involvement. 

“Our command staff worked hard to get all our candidates there,” Sgt. Christopher Bell. “Cadet Baldwin and Cadet McGraw did an outstanding job.” 

Locals loved how much the parade have grown and what was added to the excellent of the parade. 

“It was my second time going,” sophomore Ryan Stevens said. “I like seeing the cars and the decorations on them.”

Band members loved passing the community and seeing all the little kids faces.

“I enjoyed seeing all the people faces as I passed marching in the band,” senior Alex Garrison said.

Holiday music filled the cool breezy air as participants march the route of the parade. 

“The parade was really fun because we got to play jingle bells while marching and got to see all the kids happy,” sophomore Leo Mire said. 

The Christmas parade is a community event, and the clubs involved use the opportunity to show off their hard work. 

“We look forward to the Christmas parade because it gives us a chance to have our kids present themselves to the community,” Col. Vincent Jefferson said. “So the community can get a sense of pride that our candidates have in the program.”

The parade brought out the best in students who marched for the community.. 

“It was really cool to see the community come together,” senior Blaine Munguia said. “They don’t have to show up, but the fact that they come to support different schools in the area and other organizations is really cool.”

Even the big man in red dropped in to say an early Merry Christmas to all. 

“The Christmas parade always puts me in the Christmas spirit,” senior Kailee Tedder said. 




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