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Town returns to marching tradition

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Posted: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 6:15 pm

Stoneville citizens will get the chance to experience something missing from the town for several years on Saturday afternoon – a Christmas parade.

“We used to hold one every year but it stopped a few years ago,” Town Administrator Shirley Price said. “We’ve had such a great reaction to the Christmas Tree Lighting the last five years that we thought it would be a good time to try to bring back the parade.”

The rebirth of the Stoneville Christmas Parade will begin at 4 p.m. at Stoneville Memorial Park. The parade will move east on N.C. 770 and turn right onto South Glenn Street. At the intersection with U.S. 220 Business, the route takes a left turn toward town and proceeds across Main Street to North Henry Street. The parade will end at Hundley’s Grocery.

Price said entries that were able could cross the train tracks from North Henry Street to North Glenn Street and head back into town.

“The sixth annual Stoneville Christmas Tree Lighting will be held near the intersection of Main and Henry streets after the parade, so we hope everyone will be able to stick around or get back to town for that,” Price said.

Price said the parade already had about 30 entries and more were expected, including some from Friday night’s parade in Eden. In addition, there will be a surprise Grand Marshal for the parade’s return.

Price praised the work of several town staff and volunteers in preparations for Saturday’s events.

“Our Parks and Recreation Director Jackie Blackard really pulled this parade together and made it possible,” she said. “And none of this, especially the tree lighting ceremony, would be possible without the tireless volunteer efforts of Joely Tuggle and Odella Coble.”

In addition to the traditional singing of Christmas carols, music at Saturday’s tree lighting will be provided by Stoneville First Baptist Church. Boy Scouts from Stoneville Troop 566 will present the flags for the national anthem Saturday, which will be performed by Jordan Tuggle.

“Of course, we’ll have plenty of free hot chocolate and cookies for everyone and a visit from Santa himself,” Price said. “That should make it plenty of fun for children of all ages.”

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