Ticket feature: Christmas light parade big holiday attraction

File photo The Christmas Light Parade usually attracts between 80 to 100 entries. The parade will run down Main Street from 14th to Grand streets.

By Liliana Castillo: Freedom New Mexico

The annual Christmas Light Parade will light up downtown Saturday.

The parade starts at 6 p.m. and the route follows Main Street from 14th to Grand.

The official city tree in front of the Curry County Courthouse will be lit before the parade at 5:45 p.m.

Robyne Beaubien, executive director of Clovis MainStreet, said the program has organized the parade for the past four years.

Prior to that, the Clovis and Curry County Chamber of Commerce organized the parade.

The parade has been a tradition in Clovis for 12 years, according to Ernie Kos, executive director of the chamber.

“Once MainStreet was up and running, they wanted to do it because it was a downtown event. We were happy to let them take charge of it,” Kos said. “It’s only fitting that Clovis MainStreet count it as one of their downtown events.”

Beaubien said the theme for the parade is Christmas Around the world.

“We want to celebrate the diversity of how Christmas is celebrated around the world,” Beaubien said.

Beaubien said the parade usually attracts between 80 to 100 entries. The deadline for entries is 4 p.m. Friday. Registration forms are available at the chamber and Clovis MainStreet office.

All floats will line up at Hilltop Plaza beginning at 5:15 p.m. Parade walkers will line up in front of Lowe’s Grocery Store and marching bands will line up behind Marshall Middle School.

Awards will be given for first place in the three entry categories of floats, walking units, and moving vehicles and a best of show award will be given. The awards ceremony will be at the Master’s Center following the parade.

“It’s a great parade. It’s the only parade that is in the dark. It’s a lot of fun for families to come out and enjoy,” Beaubien said. “The Clovis MainStreet program is all about building community awareness. By helping make sure this parade continues, we will keep up awareness. When people come down town to see the parade, they see what’s available.”

Estimated attendance for last year’s parade was around 5,000, Beaubien. Kos said attendance numbers that range in the thousands and the number of floats make the Christmas Light Parade the largest annual parade in the city.

“It really kicks off the holiday spirit in a bright and cheery way,” Kos said.