Some parades changed to drive-by, 1 canceled
Christmas has been canceled in Madison County due to the COVID-19 pandemic — well, sort of when it comes to annual Christmas parades.
• Madison will have a reverse parade with spectators driving by at Liberty Park on Dec. 5 from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m
• Ridgeland has cancelled its annual parade with some holiday festivities continuing.
• Flora will have a parade Dec. 6 starting at 2 p.m.
• Canton will hold a drive-by parade on Dec. 3 at 7 p.m. with cars being directed past floats staged throughout the downtown. Many of the normal festivities are continuing, according to the Main Street/Chamber of Commerce.
Madison the City
In an attempt to solve the challenges presented by the annual Christmas Parade, the Madison the City will host a “reverse parade” where the crowd drives by the parade at Liberty Park.
Registration is open for the parade through Brittany Mayfield, general manager of events with the Madison Parks and Recreation Department. The registration deadline is Nov. 23. Registration forms require the exact dimensions of each float.
“Due to the nature of this year’s event, all entries must be on a float with the only exception being bands and dance groups,” Mayfield said.
The reverse parade will be held on Saturday, Dec. 5 from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. at Liberty Park. The theme is “Christmas Through the Decades.” This will be a drive-thru parade only., meaning that personal vehicles will enter the park and drive around an area where the floats and performing acts will be parked in stationary spaces.
Pedestrians not associated with the parade floats will not be allowed to enter the parade area. Bands and Dance groups will be given an area of what a float would be given. “You will need to be prepared to perform in the designated area only,” officials said.
Parade floats will be prohibited from passing out items such as candy, flowers or toys. No live animals will be allowed.
Attendees will have the option of tuning into a radio station that will play Christmas music during the parade.
Floats will be judged by a panel prior to the parade. The winners will be announced through city social media after the parade is complete.
Canton has decided to go forward with their annual Christmas festival. It will include their annual spectacle of lights downtown, social distanced pictures with Santa and other events. Festivities start next weekend, Nov. 27, with the Merchants Open House Weekend.
Festivities are set to continue through Dec. 23.
Ridgeland Recreation and Parks announced on Friday, Nov. 13, that due to local school regulations regarding student participation in public events, including bands and clubs, the city has made the difficult decision to cancel the annual parade.
The annual Christmas Tree Lighting in Ridgeland is still scheduled for Dec. 3 at 6:30 p.m.