Little gifts for the stockings hung by the chimney with care, s’mores, a Christmas parade and tree lighting are sure to speak to everyone’s inner “right jolly old elf” as Hillsville slates it’s Dec. 5 yuletide celebration.
Event Director Jessica Talley of High Country Services and Funeral & Cremations said the Historic Hillsville Christmas Parade and Christmas Tree Lighting is a cooperative event between The Town Beautification Committee, The Friends of Hillsville, local businesses, the town and Carroll County. A portion of Main Street will be closed off beginning at 5 p.m. on Dec. 5. The Parade is set to begin at 7 p.m.
“The theme of this year’s parade is the Sights and Sounds of Christmas,” said Talley. “We encourage everyone with floats to make sure they are well lighted so they will be visible. We’re excited to announce Sam Dickson will serve as grand marshal for the parade this year.”
The parade’s route goes from Main Street to the VFW Post 1115. She said this is the second year of the Friends’ group involvement and it is hoped the crowds continue to grow.
According to Talley, participating businesses will offer stocking stuffing items for children. The first 300 children to check in at the Town offices will receive a free Christmas stocking. Items suitable to “stuff” Christmas stockings will be offered only at participating businesses.
The Christmas tree lighting, which is sponsored by the County and Hillsville, is set to begin at 6 p.m. on the Historic Courthouse lawn. It will be officiated by County Supervisors, Town Manager Retta Jackson, and Mayor Gregory Crowder, with caroling to follow. The Hillsville Volunteer Fire Department and County Recreation Department will be on hand to serve participants hot chocolate and assist in s’more assembly and preparation.
The North Pole’s number one citizen, Santa Claus, is scheduled to be on hand at The Carter Home from 5 to 6 p.m. and will also be in the parade. Parade participants are expected to begin lining up at 6 p.m. at the County Government Complex and judging begins at 6:15 p.m.
Hillsville Beautification Committee member Laura Sinclair said a window decoration contest is also being held by the group beginning with the Dec. 5 parade and ending on Dec. 12. She said categories for judging include most original, most religious and best theme.
First, second and third place awards will be given for each of these categories with a prize of $100 going to first-place winners. Gift certificates from Pizza Perfect Restaurant, The Hillsville Diner on Main Street or The Hardware Company Restaurant go to the second- and third-place finishers in each category. A “Best All Around” award (for bragging rights only) will also be given out.
“We are excited about this. We’re hoping to get even more participants representing local churches and civic groups,” Sinclair said. “We hope to branch out on the street decorations on poles and window decorations along U.S. 58 and U.S. 52 a bit in the future. We’re hoping for good weather with no wind or rain.”
People may obtain more information about the contest by calling (276) 210-6309.
Sinclair said members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1115 Young Guns will serve as judges for the contest. The area to be judged for the Christmas decoration contest follows the parade route. The contest this year is open to businesses and homeowners in the area from U.S. 58 to Carroll County Middle School. Sinclair said this is a first time for the window decoration contest for businesses and residents being held along with the Christmas Parade and Tree lighting ceremonies.
She said the perennial presence of the “Kazim Hillbilly Kusins” in the parade insures it is a laid back event where families can have fun.
David Broyles may be reached at 276-779-4013 or on Twitter@CarrollNewsDave.