Updated: Nov. 17, 2020
The Santa Claus Parade Committee in Grimsby has planned a reverse parade for 2020, and has expanded on its annual event by dubbing the entire season, ‘Holiday of Hope’.
The reconfigured project, set for Dec. 5, will have a “support local” theme as a reminder of how critical it is to support local businesses and those in need this year.
Santa Claus Reverse Parade
Since the Niagara Region is now in Ontario’s Orange-Restrict tier to fight COVID-19, and gathering limits have been reduced, the reimagined parade will have static floats. Residents will drive a pre-planned route and visit 8-10 Christmas installations. Usually, spectators line up on Livingston Ave. and Main Street in Grimsby. The new drive-by approach ensures parade revellers can stay socially distanced from each other.
Pedestrian gatherings will also be restricted along the parade route during the event to keep everyone safe. The Grimsby Downtown Improvement Area, the Niagara police, and Grimsby Fire Department will support the closure that is expected to take place from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. on the downtown strip closing the northbound lane of Main St. West, from Ontario St. to Christie St. The parade will be supervised by paid-duty police officers. Road signs will also be arranged by town staff.
Prior to the event, the town will post a pre-published map with a recommended route. This will happen closer to the date of the parade as locations and the route are still being finalized. The Bench News will report this information when available.
Support Local Families
Of course, Santa Claus will be in attendance this year too. The Grimsby Fire Department will be at Santa’s static float where they’ll be collecting donations for the Grimsby Benevolent Fund’s Christmas Hamper program. It’s been a difficult year for all. Contributions made to GBF (formally know as the Grimsby Benevolent Fund Community Services) will help meet the increased need for supporting residents in need this holiday season.
Prior to the reverse parade, donations will also be accepted at the Peach King Centre. Anyone can drop in a donate from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m on the day of the parade. Food bags will be included in the November 26th edition of News Now.
‘Shop local’ theme
The Santa Claus Parade Committee is also encouraging residents to make a special effort to support local businesses in any way they can on parade day. Residents are asked to drop into a favorite store to pick up a gift, or grab a take-out meal from a local restaurant. Some might want to browse local shops online too. All these actions are a great way to help revive the local economy that’s been hit hard by the pandemic.
See a growing list of holiday special offers from local businesses here.
The town will be posting information on its website and social media to continue to encourage residents to buy local. To stay connected to the latest on the Holiday of Hope and the parade, visit the Grimbsy Santa Claus Parade page on the town’s website.