By: Carol Beck-Round | Category: In Our Communities | Issue: November 2011
Santa Claus will make another appearance this year at Claremore’s annual Christmas parade, a family holiday tradition for more than 60 years.
Claremore’s Will Rogers Boulevard will glow with thousands of lights when the annual Christmas parade travels down the well-known route to bring smiles to area children on Saturday, December 3 at 6 p.m. For over 60 years, the parade has been a family holiday tradition and has become a part of the Claremore area history. Special guest, of course, will be Santa Claus, who will arrive from the North Pole just in time to join the parade and bring a thrill to the youngsters.
“The parade theme for this year is ‘Claremore Lights the Way’ for the Christmas season,” says Claremore Chamber of Commerce Board Chair Pam Steffens. “The theme and the evening format offer a great opportunity for area groups to design lighted entries that best represent what this important holiday means to their group.”
Cash prizes will be awarded to entries for Best Use of Theme, Best of Lights and to the entry exhibiting the best Christmas spirit.
“The Christmas Parade is the perfect reminder that Christmas is about the quality of life that we enjoy in our community,” says Larry Rahmeier, Chamber Christmas Parade committee chair. “Participants always include a wide variety of entries including various drill teams, youth groups, churches, specialty units, classic cars, and those fun-loving Akdar Shrine units who always make you smile.”
Mrs. Claus was able to participate in last year’s Claremore Christmas parade. This float was one of approximately 100 entries that participate annually in the Chamber of Commerce-sponsored parade.
Parade entries range in number from 90 to 100. Marching bands are encouraged to enter as well. Please contact the Chamber for entry forms by calling (918) 341-2818 or online at www.claremore.org. According to Rahmeier, pre-registration is required so the staging and line-up crew can know what to expect. Each float rider is also required to sign a release.
“Of course this event for the community would not be possible without the support of our sponsors,” says Chamber President Dell Davis. “The parade ‘Present’ing sponsor is Claremore Physicians Immediate Care. RCB Bank is the Star Sponsor, while our Ribbon sponsors are First Baptist Church, Mazzio’s Pizza and Cedar Point Church. We appreciate their support for this event. We would also like to recognize the many departments of the City of Claremore for their assistance with logistics, and the Claremore Police, Fire and Park Departments and the Rogers County Sheriff’s Department for all their assistance with traffic control, ensuring a safe route for attendees and participants.”
Rahmeier also acknowledged the hard work of Chamber staff and volunteers in staging and directing the parade down Will Rogers Boulevard. “It takes 15 to 20 Chamber-member volunteers to successfully stage the parade. We’re out in the weather just like the participants and spectators. Our reward is seeing the faces on the children as they watch the lights and wait for Santa’s arrival. As that commercial says, it’s ‘priceless.’”
The parade, which lasts from an hour to an hour and a half, will travel from the Expo Center east on Will Rogers Boulevard and end at the Gazebo downtown. Davis cautions people to remember to be aware of street closings that will take place along the route.
After 30 years in public school education, Carol Round retired and moved from Grand Lake to Claremore, Oklahoma in 2005, where she writes a weekly faith-based column which runs in 14 Oklahoma newspapers as well as several national and international publications. Three volumes of her columns have been compiled into collections: A Matter of Faith, Faith Matters and by FAITH alone. She has also written Journaling with Jesus: How to Draw Closer to God and a companion workbook, The 40-Day Challenge. This past year she has written three children’s books, a series called Nana’s 3 Jars, to teach children about the value of giving, saving and spending money. All of Carol’s books are available through Amazon. In addition to writing her weekly column, authoring books and speaking to women’s groups, she writes for Value News. She also blogs regularly at www.carolaround.com. When she is not writing or speaking, she loves spending time with her three grandchildren, working in her flowerbeds, shooting photos, volunteering at her church or going on mission trips overseas, and hiking. She is also an avid reader and loves working crosswords and trying to solve Sudoku puzzles.