Santa, Mrs. Claus big draws to Norco Christmas Parade
Santa and Mrs. Claus will actually fly into Norco in a helicopter, landing on the River Road levee at around 1:40 p.m. The Clauses will then be ushered into their special float just in time for the parade, which will start at 2 p.m. at the intersection of River Road and Washington Street.
From there, the parade turns north on Good Hope Street, west on Sixth Street and then south on Apple Street. It disbands at the intersection of Apple Street and River Road.
Currently, eight floats are signed up for the parade along with numerous dance groups, school bands, horse riders and even a jazz band. Organizers expect around 50 total groups, including a small train that will travel down the parade route.
Plenty of candy and beads will be tossed into the crowd.
The theme of this year’s parade is “Norco Noel: Heaux! Heaux! Heaux! Dat! A Black and Gold Christmas.”
“We are celebrating the Super Bowl win and this has really been the year of the Saints,” Carleen Manning, one of the parade’s organizers, said. “We have asked all of our floats to incorporate black and gold into their decorations.”
The family fun continues after the parade with a community celebration at the Capital One Bank parking lot on Apple Street, where Santa and Mrs. Claus will light the Christmas tree.
Both Clauses will pose for pictures with the children in attendance, so organizers encourage parade-goers to bring their cameras.
“If you do forget to bring a camera, we can take one for you and you will be able to download it later from our Web site,” Manning said.
The Web site can be found at http://www.freewebs.com/norcoparade.
“This parade is so unique because it’s a home town parade that has probably been held for 20 years in Norco,” Manning said. “I have fond memories of the parade from when I was a little kid.”
Destrehan High School Principal Stephen Weber, who also helped organize the parade, says that its atmosphere sets it apart.
“It is a much more family-centered parade than the ones you go to during Mardi Gras,” he said. “It’s something that families of Norco, as well as families from surrounding areas, look forward to each year.”
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