The annual Hillsboro Christmas Parade will be held again this year as it has been traditionally on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, but it will be an illuminated parade starting at 7 p.m.
The Nov. 28 parade is sponsored by the Hillsboro Uptown Business Association (HUBA) and the theme this year is Silver Bells Christmas.
“We just wanted to change things up a little, plus it’s the Saturday after Thanksgiving when a lot people will be on the road and maybe this will give them a little more time to get home for the parade. And, no matter how much pleading and begging we do each year, those Ohio State and Michigan people won’t move the start time of that game,” HUBA president Joe Mahan joked.
The Ohio State versus Michigan football game is also traditionally played the Saturday after Thanksgiving and it’s scheduled for Nov. 28 again this year. A kick off time has not yet been announced.
Mahan said there had been some interest moving the time of the parade, some interesting in moving the date of the parade, and some interest in doing both.
“We decided not to move the date because of tradition, but we said let’s give the evening time a try,” Mahan said.
In addition to the parade, a Santa’s Workshop will be set up in The Times-Gazette’s Community Room. Mahan said that will be prior to the parade, but exact times have not been set.
There will also be a live nativity scene presented by the Marshall United Methodist Church. That will be in an empty bay owned by Hillsboro Mayor Drew Hastings that’s located between The Times-Gazette offices and Paint Creek Joint EMS/Fire District’s Hillsboro station. Times and other details are still being worked out.
Shop Small Saturday, a nationwide movement to encourage retail shopping at locally owned, small businesses, will be held in conjunction with the other events.
In addition, Mahan said HUBA is working on other ideas like a place where uptown visitors can get coffee and hot chocolate during the parade and other events, but those things are still in the discussion stage.
HUBA is compiling a mailing list for parade entry applications, which will be mailed out the first week of October. If you’re a family, local business, house of worship, civic organization, school group, youth group, or non-profit group and would like to have a parade application mailed to you, call or send a text to Mahan at 937-403-3715; or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and leave the name of the group and a valid mailing address.
The parade will depart the Highland County Fairgrounds at 7 p.m. and should arrive in the center of Hillsboro around 7:15 p.m., Mahan said.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522 or on Twitter @13gillilandj.