The warm weather certainly helped bring out thousands of people to the 37th annual Santa Claus parade.

Spectators and shoppers filled downtown High River on Friday night to Light Up George Lane Park and welcome Mr. and Mrs. Claus to town.

The entertainment got underway at 5:00 p.m. on the Calgary Stampede stage in front of George Lane Park with the Windmill Theatre Players singing Christmas carols. Mayor Craig Snodgrass and son Oren flipped the switch on the stage to light up George Lane Park at 6:00 p.m. 

The Lions Club helped serve 500 free hot dogs courtesy of High River Sobey's as hot chocolate was handed out at various stops.  And who could forget about the candy bags and the light wands that were handed out to all the kids.  There was also something new this year, a petting zoo at The Venue. 

The winter market in the Highwood Centre also brought in a lot of shoppers looking for those unique, local Christmas gifts. The market's even open on Saturday from 10:00 a.m. till 4:00 p.m. 

The smiles and excitement of the kids as each passing float and entry went by increased until the star of the parade, Santa Claus came riding right down Santa Claus Lane, aka Macleod Trail, with Mrs. Claus by his side waving to all the good girls and boys of all ages. 

And none of it could have happened without volunteers along with the leadership of Ted Dawson and Lorraine Watson. 

And it was up to 7 volunteer judges to decide the winners in last night's extravaganza. 

They're judged on Music (music of the season), Lights (was entry decorated), Theme (Celebrate Moms) and Participation (with spectators).

Commercial Float, in town:

  1. Dance Tech Inc.
  2. Dee-Alta Tires
  3. TIE - Farmboy Landscaping & Maintenance // High River Balloon Events Committee

Commercial Float, out of town:

  1. Assist Health Supplies, Calgary
  2. Vertical Crane & Rigging, Okotoks
  3. Aspen Crossing, Mossleigh

Organizations (Churches, Schools, Youth):

  1. Rotary Club of High River
  2. TIE - High River Minor Soccer // Okotoks BMX Club
  3. Foothills Community Immigrant Services/Cargill Meat Solutions

Horse Entries/Wagons:

  1. Bar U Ranch National Historic Site

Antique Cars, Trucks, Tractors, etc.:

  1. The Christmas Charity Truck
  2. Eamon's Garage/River City Classics
  3. Edwin Bronsch

With the Best Overall float/entry coming out in a draw. 

Both Dance Tech Inc. and the Rotary Club of High River tied for the bragging rights.

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