|As in the song "Silver Bells" the shoppers wander up and down the streets looking for bargains and that special present.|
While many Carbon County residents are packing away Halloween decor and thinking about Thanksgiving turkey, Helper residents are already planning for Christmas. That's because events involved in the annual Helper Christmas Town Festival are scheduled to begin the middle of this month and will continue through Dec. 2.
The main event that highlights the month long festival is the Electric Light Parade. This year, the City of Helper will host their 17th Christmas parade on Dec. 1 and 2 at 7 p.m. each night. The tradition is one that citizens from across the state look forward to each year.
With the parade only a month away, Christmas Town committee officials are beginning to round up entries. According to festival committee member Vicky Miller, now is the time to start constructing floats.
"Anyone can enter the parade. The only rule is that the theme centers around Christmas and that there are lights on the entry," explained Miller. "Entry forms are available at Helper City Hall."
Few rules apply when it comes to float entries. The committee does require that participants be with their float by 5:45 p.m. each night of the parade and owners must stay with the floats during the line up.
|Halloween may be over the but "The Nightmare Before Christmas" still hangs around for the parade.|
Festival committee members also ask that no live Santas be on a float. This allows the real Santa to greet the kids at the end of the parade each night.
Miller explained that parade entries range from elaborate floats to bicycles with a few strings of lights draped across the handlebars. As long as lights and Christmas are included in the scheme, pretty much anything goes.
Each year, students at Helper Junior High participate in the light parade by helping in the process of preparing a float for the parade and with many of them riding on it. Students draw their own plans of what they want the float to look like. They then come up with a budget and a time frame for construction. After this process is complete, this year's student body representatives meet with the sponsor and present them with the schools plans.
By getting the kids involved in the entire design and construction process, the experience becomes more fun and it is educational at the same time.
Now is the time to begin plans for the Christmas Town festival events. Advanced planning can lead to a successful parade this year as well as added support for the City of Helper.