This Sunday, Marion will kick off the holiday season of “Winter Nights – Christmas Lights” with the annual parade down Main Street. And next week will see the return of holiday cash giveaways at downtown businesses.
The 2018 Marion Christmas parade will be 3 p.m. Sunday. The event starts the Thanksgiving and Christmas activities for the city of Marion. The parade is organized by the Marion Business Association and sponsored by the city.
The theme for the parade and the Marion holiday season is “Winter Nights – Christmas Lights.”
The parade marshal is Judge Robert C. “Bob” Hunter. Hunter served as a member of the N.C. House of Representatives for almost 18 years. He served on the N.C. Court of Appeals since his appointment and then election in 1998. In 2006, he was re-elected to an eight-year term. During his 16 years on the Court of Appeals, he decided more than 5,000 cases and authored more than 1,600 opinions. He retired at the end of 2014. Currently, he serves as a justice on the Supreme Court of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians. In 2017, Gov. Roy Cooper appointed him Chairman of the state Property Tax Commission. He also worked as a practicing lawyer in Marion for 29 years, according to a news release.
Our own award-winning McDowell High School Marching Titan Band will be featured at the beginning of the parade. All parade float entries are required to be registered. The registration number is to be displayed in the window of the parade entry. Parade entries should be fully decorated with a Christmas theme and have all passengers loaded when arriving for parade line-up.
Emergency vehicles with public address systems are encouraged to play Christmas music. The Marion Police Department does not allow candy to be thrown from any vehicle or float. Handouts by persons walking in the parade route are encouraged. The Marion Business Association and the city of Marion will sponsor the only Santa Claus in the Christmas parade. No other Santa will be allowed in the parade. Churches may have only one bus/unit in the parade and it must be decorated, according to the news release.
The parade line-up begins at 1:30 p.m. in the parking lot of Rose’s at the Marion City Square. All parade vehicles are to enter Robinson Road behind Rose’s and come into the parking lot. Vehicles will then be entered into the line-up. Horses will line up on Monte Vista Avenue. Horse trailers are to be taken to the Public Works Department behind the Hook & Anchor Restaurant on Rutherford Road. No horses are allowed in the shopping center parking lot.
The parade procession will begin at Monte Vista Avenue and North Main Street and will finish at Spring and South Main streets. Walking units will enter the parade at the Community Building. The parade is to stay together until it reaches Morgan Street and all entries are to go to the end of the parade route before disbanding. Children on floats can be picked up at the Hook & Anchor Restaurant on Rutherford Road.
Sunday’s parade is only the beginning of “Winter Nights – Christmas Lights” in Marion.
Returning after several years is the holiday cash drawing promotion. Fifteen downtown businesses will give raffle tickets for every $10 spent in their business between Friday, Nov. 23 and Thursday, Dec. 20. Customers can win $500 cash, $250 cash, $150 cash and $100 cash. Participating businesses open Thursday evenings until 8:30 p.m. Nov. 29 through Dec. 20.
For every $10 purchased at participating stores, customers will receive a ticket. Mayor Steve Little will pull the winning tickets at the Marion City Stage, 6:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 21. The winning ticket holder must be present to win, according to a news release.
You can follow the Candy Cane Trail to get your ticket from these participating Marion merchants: Aria Rose Clothing, Austin Furniture, Bill Griffith Jewelers, Crooked Door Coffee House, Fire and Ice Jewelry, Flavors on Main, Happy Hen Vintage, Killough’s Music & Loan, MACA, Mr. Bob's Do-Nuts, Shucks Pearls, Springhouse Farm Home Décor, Spruced Boutique, Vintage Market Marion and XYZ Spirits.
There are other supporting businesses but they are not giving tickets. These are Bruce’s Fabulous Foods, Burrito Bros., McDowell Chamber of Commerce, McDowell Local, Mica Town Brewing, Mountain Marquee, Mulligan Mack’s After Five Pub & Grill, Realty Group 1 and Refinery 13 taproom.
The “Winter Nights – Christmas Lights” cash drawing promotion is organized by Marion businesses owners: Charlene Hollifield – Shucks Pearls; Doug Watson – Flavors on Main and Tim Elliott – XYZ Spirits with the support of the MBA, according to the news release.
For more information, call the Marion Business Association at 828-652-2215.