Saint Nicholas, Father Christmas, Kris Kringle, or most often put, “Santa,” is a legendary figure who is said to deliver gifts to the homes of deserving children and adults alike during the late evening hours of Christmas Eve.
If you happen to miss his appearance on that date, you can catch him Friday along the 2011 Downtown Johnson City Christmas Parade route. The parade starts at 7 p.m. sharp.
This year’s parade schedule was announced Tuesday at Majestic Park. What with all of Santa Claus’ pre-Christmas duties — making a list, checking it twice, giftwrapping and bulking up for his worldwide goodwill tour — the big guy was not able to be on hand. But as is her nature, Mrs. Claus was happy to represent her hubby at the announcement.
“My husband is back at the Elf Factory, but I hope you all come out and see us on Friday,” said the colorfully attired first lady of the North Pole.
Vice Mayor Phil Carriger, Friends of Olde Downtowne and Chamber of Commerce representatives also were on hand for the announcement.
“Mrs. Claus and l have known each other for a long, long time, Carriger said. “I’m looking forward to the parade and hope everybody comes out.
This year’s parade, which will have more floats than last year’s event, will travel along the same route as last year. The Parade theme is simply “Christmas,” and its duration from start to finish is estimated at about 90 minutes.
Parade participants will include parade floats sponsored by local merchants and business groups, churches, area high school marching bands, civic organizations and of course Santa Claus. The parade procession will line up at the former Burley Tobacco lot at State of Franklin and Legion Street. One lane of Legion Street will be dedicated to emergency thru traffic. The parade will begin by turning left onto State of Franklin Road traveling west and turning right onto Buffalo Street and continuing onto East Main Street, with the disbandment in the Cranberry Street parking lot on Lonnie Lowe Lane.
Santa Claus will be available for photographs with children in his “big chair” from 1-6 p.m. the day of the parade in the lobby of the King’s Centre at 300 E. Main Street. Santa will sit and to children give their Christmas lists, but he also will be asking if they’ve been naughty or nice.
Shooting Star Photography will offer a photograph CD package with high resolution shots in three different poses with each child to capture the memory. A photo package is $25.
For a detailed map of the route, go to www.downtownjc.org.