Lewes Christmas Parade a great success
This year’s Lewes Christmas Parade, annually co-sponsored by the City of Lewes and the Lewes Chamber of Commerce & Visitor’s Bureau, continued the trend to larger parades. One hundred twenty-two registered entries competed for prizes, including creative floats from community and youth organizations, the Cape Henlopen High School Band, numerous marching groups, Frosty the Snowman in the form of a giant helium balloon carried by the Lewes Chamber of Commerce board of directors, a Punkin Chunkin vehicle, clowns, decorated classic cars and vehicles including some from the British Car Club of Delaware and fire trucks from Sussex & Kent Counties. There were even horses, goats and a pony in the parade this year! The parade concluded with the lighting of the year-old Christmas tree in Zwaanendael Park donated by the DiSabatino family followed by candlelight caroling enjoyed by individuals and families.
In addition to all the community members who entered the parade, we would like to thank those volunteers who helped us line up the parade – Jim Barr, Ben King, Terry Stuchlik, G. W. Thompson, Harry Sheing, Rob Gibbs, Jim and Joan Horn, Jack Lesher, Dave Bernheisel and Bill Henry as well as Chris King for post-parade help taking down the line up stakes.
We’d also like to acknowledge our longtime parade announcer Dennis Forney for his help with setting up the parade as well as providing an informative and entertaining narrative during the parade. This year’s talented parade judges, all chamber members from law firms, were Virginia Zrake, Heidi Gilmore and Larry Fifer with assistance from Jay Reamer.
Other volunteers to be recognized for their help with other aspects of the event: Christy Taylor for leading the caroling with her volunteer chorus; Bill Larsen’s sound system; Best Equipment for supplying the judges reviewing stand with Eddie’s assistance; George & Nancy Russ for getting Santa’s House ready for the holiday and for decorating the judge’s reviewing stand’s lighting. Special thanks to Gilbert Holt Jr. for his participation in the parade and Santa House throughout the holiday season.
Santa’s House was in need of refurbishment this year and a number of individuals and businesses contributed to the effort. The Chamber collaborated with Mayor Jim Ford, who oversaw the project. The Mayor enlisted help from two men associated with his business-Neal Murabito and Tom Morris- as well as the City of Lewes Street Department for painting, Nuttle Lumber Company, Quality Roofing Supply, Lowe’s & JKB Builders, and Glenn Howard LLC. Sign*A*RAMA donated a sign for the Santa House acknowledging the contributors.
Santa made one final request and that was for some new curtains. The owners of Deanna’s & Piccolino - Deanna Wagamon & Ashley King - went to work stitching up the red and white replacements made of fabric from Mare’s Bears owner Maryann McFee. Only one more detail to be worked on and that was help wrapping the presents under the tree. Teresa Ford at Kids’ Ketch provided that assistance.
We also want to thank the Lewes Fire Company and the Delaware Fire Police for their assistance with traffic control during the hours leading up to the parade and during the parade; the City Police Department for their assistance at the parade and with Hospitality Night; the City’s Streets Department for their assistance with all the holiday activities and for cleaning up the parade line up area in Highland Acres; Louie Papp from the City’s Parks & Recreation commission for making sure Zwaanendael Park was pristine for the holiday and every day; the Board of Public Works for hanging the holiday lights throughout the City to set the mood for the parade and the group of residents who have been raising money to purchase more Christmas lights to expand the decorations; Mayumi Williamson of Flowers by Mayumi for donating the Grand Marshals’ corsage and boutonniere; and Dick Bryan for supplying the grand marshals’ vehicle. We also appreciate The Reminders and the Cape Henlopen High School Jazz Band and their director Chris Burkhart for providing the musical entertainment on Hospitality Night.
Finally, our deep appreciation is extended to the good-natured residents of Highland Acres who annually let us pound stakes and park huge vehicles in their front lawns for a couple of hours on the occasion of our annual Old Fashioned Christmas Parade.
Lewes Parade chairman