A Charlie Brown Christmas is theme of Ashtabula's annual holiday parade

Ashtabula's annual Christmas parade always spreads holiday cheer and draws a large crowd downtown. 

ASHTABULA — It may look like Halloween but organizers are getting ready for Ashtabula’s annual Christmas parade.

The parade will start at 7 p.m. Nov. 22  along Main Avenue. It is presented by the Ashtabula Downtown Development Association.

“A Charlie Brown Christmas” is this year’s theme of the parade. Participants are asked to create floats to match the theme and decorate with lots of Christmas lights, costumes and music, said Myke Anderson, ADDA president.

“It’s going to be a great parade,” she said.

Suzy Kist is the parade’s organizer for the fifth year in a row.

“I absolutely love Christmas,” Kist said. “I love everything about it, including the parade.”

Anderson said Kist does a great job with the parade and it has grown under her direction.

Kist hopes to draw 100 units this year, making it the biggest holiday parade in the area.

Applications are available for anyone who wants to participate on the ADDA website.

“The ADDA does a great job with the parade,” said City Council President John Roskovics. “Every year it seems to be growing and what a wonderful addition it is to the holidays. It’s great seeing families, especially the kids, downtown and enjoying the parade.”

Along with Santa Claus, the parade will feature local firefighters, police officers, baton twirlers, dance troupes, scouts, horses, the Lakeside High Marching Band and several holiday floats.

The parade will follow judging for the ADDA’s window/storefront decorating contest and the 10th annual Christmas Trees in the Park decorating contest.

Again this year, Manners Christmas Tree Farm is donating the trees and city employees will help with set up to make the event a success.

Trees and windows must be decorated by 3 p.m. Nov. 21.

Organizers ask that no one dress as Santa for the parade because they have their own Santa, Anderson said.

Deadline to register for the parade is Nov. 1. Applications can be found at the ADDA website.

Volunteers and donations of candy are needed. Candy can be dropped off at The Hairapist, 4610 Main Ave., Ashtabula.

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