Elizabethton Christmas Parade takes place on Saturday

Santa Claus always rides on top of a fire truck in the Annual Downtown Elizabethton Christmas Parade.

ELIZABETHTON — There will be more than 50 units in the Annual Downtown Christmas Parade, which features several marching bands, candy for the children and Santa Claus riding atop a fire truck. The parade will start at 6 p.m. and will proceed down East Elk Avenue from Big John’s Closeouts to the Veterans Monument.

The theme for this year’s parade is “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” such as five gold rings and four calling birds. Most of the entrants will use the popular Christmas song as inspiration in designing their floats and other units. “I am looking forward to seeing the many takes they will make on the song,” said Elizabeth White, administrative assistant at the Chamber of Commerce.

“We have more units than we had last year,” White said. Like last year, the entrants will not be divided into separate categories. Judges will be at an inconspicuous spot along the parade route.

White said the parade will form up in the parking lot across the street from Big John’s at 5:30 p.m.

White said the grand marshals for this year’s parade will be emergency first responders in recognition of the important jobs they perform during emergencies in the city and county. The first responders were also honored during the annual lighting of the Community Christmas Tree by jointly turning on the lights.