Unionville welcomes Christmas with parade

Monroe lights its tree; Indian Trail celebrates today
Dec. 02, 2012 @ 03:25 AM

Unionville's holiday festivities began Saturday at 3 p.m. with food sales, arts and crafts and other activities.

About 4 p.m., the annual Christmas parade began, which for the fourth year was sponsored by Unionville American Legion Post 535.

While some had attended the parade in past years, some viewed it for the first time Saturday.

"It just grows each year," Bill Alexander, a member of American Legion Post 535, said in reference to attendees and vendors at the annual event.

No matter how many times people watching from the sides of the parade route had seen the parade, a lot of them said they enjoyed the overall atmosphere of the event even if Saturday was the first time they had ever attended.

"It's a good community parade," Mya Honeycutt, who saw it Saturday, said.

Like Honeycutt, others said they enjoyed the friendly, community atmosphere of the parade and the activities prior to it.

"Here, it's focused straight on Unionville," Brian Sossamon said in reference to the parade.

He grew up in Unionville and remembers watching the town's Christmas parade as a child and is glad to see his children be able to now watch and participate in the parade. To him, the Unionville parade is great because it focuses specifically on the town and the local community, he said.

"I like it because of the food and the people and it's really awesome," Jessica Best, 10, who attended the parade with her mother and sister Saturday, said.

As vehicles from local fire departments, members of marching bands, ROTC groups, area organizations and others made their way down the parade route, people of all ages and even a few dogs could be found watching from both sides of the street. Often people could be seen waving to each other and scooping up the candy that rained down on the street as parade participants tossed it into the crowd.

"I like the community atmosphere of it and getting to see everybody you know," Pam Williams, who attended Saturday's parade, said.

Like Williams, many at the parade knew other attendees or knew of someone marching or riding in the parade. Candy from parade participants, cotton candy and funnel cakes for sale along the parade route and seeing Santa Claus were some of the things people said they liked most about the annual event.

After the parade, Unionville's 13th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting was scheduled to begin at 5 p.m.  with Maggie Hamilton performing during it. Spiced cider and refreshments were also available for attendees at Unionville's town hall.

Also on Saturday, Christmas in Downtown Monroe ran from 6 p.m.- 8 p.m. and included the arrival of Santa Claus at 6 p.m. as well as a Tree Lighting with Mayor Bobby Kilgore at 7 p.m. and other activities.

On Sunday, Indian Trail held its Christmas parade, which was sponsored by Union West Rotary and the Town of Indian Trail at 3 p.m. There was also a Tree Lighting in the town at Crossing Paths Park that began at 5:30 p.m.

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Click 'Related Content' link, on right, for an additional 48 photos from Unionville's festivities on Saturday.