My life has punctuation points. Beginnings, pauses and endings.
I mark time with events.
One of my punctuation points is the Blowing Rock Christmas parade.
Every Saturday after Thanksgiving I try to get there.
I start my Christmas season with a parade, not a shopping trip.
I like how folks come together in the streets to celebrate the season.
The firemen start the procession.
There are costumes and characters
dancers and drummers
bands and ballerinas
horses in hats
and swinging bears.
Both naughty and nice flow past.
Santa comes at the end waving and pointing at children while smiling.
That’s how I know the season has started.
Standing on a sidewalk with strangers.
There together waiting and watching and waving.
The parade makes me pause.
When the procession ends. The pause is over.
We all break ranks and get back to our busy lives
with smiles on our faces.
I was thrilled to get to watch a parade that did not require hot glue and poster putty.
This real parade was in the mountain town of Blowing Rock, North Carolina.
I will spare you commentary. Enjoy the parade.
I will mention my favorite character in the parade. Let’s call her Sparkle.
She came through three times. I think she cut the corner and came back around.
I love a parade!
There are three parades each year that I try not to miss.
The Blowing Rock parade on Thanksgiving weekend is one of them.
I am always glad to see some of the same characters every year.
The leader is a lady clown on her three-wheeler with a basket and balloons.
Among the old trucks is the “Mater” truck with a stained glass window and a swing for a seat.
I always look forward to the woman pulling the tiny truck carrying a Christmas tree.
There are also noisy groups of happy cloggers.
and dance troupes.
This year they were in Nutcracker costumes.
A Grinch or two shows up.
Anyone can join in the parade. Big or little.
Two legs or four legs.
We debated whether this was Scooby Doo or a Kangaroo?
I see all this as an opportunity for anyone to stop traffic and strut their stuffing.
It’s such a family friendly event.
Santa brings up the rear riding in a bucket firetruck.
I love this parade of characters.
We always watch the parade from the funeral home. They have an awning for shade.
The Troutman parade never disappoints.
It’s a mix of characters and critters,
cars and campers,
patriotic symbols and patriots,
and of course there’s a band,
advertisements for businesses,
even real animals
but my FAVORITE of all slipped quietly by in the midst of all the action and noise.
A precious little lady in her bonnet, shyly waving to the crowd.
Oh! I love a parade.