This year the Hillsboro Lighted Christmas Parade saw its route changed slightly Saturday and next year the event maybe be held a week earlier, parade coordinator Jennifer Cundiff-Maurer said Monday.
“I’ve heard positive things about the new route, especially from some of the band members who were excited they didn’t have to march up the hill that starts down by Community Markets,” Cundiff-Maurer said. “The long hill caused a gap between some of our floats and I think things flowed pretty smooth this year.”
She said that next year the parade, held in recent years on the second Saturday in December, may be moved to the first Saturday in December to coincide with the Hillsboro Uptown Christmas. That event was held Friday, Dec. 3 featuring horse-drawn carriage rides, visits with Santa, readings of the “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” to children seated on hay bales, carolers, a Christmas tree lighting, vendors, various business staying open and more.
“We’re looking at changing to the first Saturday in December to go along with the Hillsboro Uptown Christmas so we can have a whole, fun weekend of Christmas events,” Cundiff-Maurer said.
There were 39 entries in Saturday’s parade, not counting several fire trucks, the grand marshals float and a few others.
“We’re hoping to make it bigger and better every year,” she said, noting that there were 20-some entries in last year’s parade.
The top four floats as picked by a panel of judges received trophies. First place went to a wildly creative float entered by the Sliver Spurs 4-H Club. It shot off confetti and belched smoke in the center of town. Second place went to a float created by the Bartley family, third place went to the Miller Mason Paving/Ohio Asphalt float, and fourth place went to a float created by the Harper family.
“It was hard to pick one above the other,” Cundiff-Maurer said of the large number of quality floats.
Cundiff-Maurer said she wanted to thank longtime parade deejays Brian Vance and Alex Butler, who have been announcing the parade since the 1990s and for 15 years, respectively; the parade sponsors; grand marshals Tom and Maggie Horst; and local law enforcement personnel.
“I think for a new parade route, they handled it very well,” she said.
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522.