By Gordon Woodworth, Chronicle News Editor
The 40th annual South Glens Falls Holiday Parade starts at 1 p.m. this Sunday, Nov. 24. It starts at Carriage Traders and proceeds north on U.S. Route 9.
“I cannot even explain how excited I am for the parade,” said Megan Quinn, the South Glens Falls native who stepped up late in 2017 to save the parade, working with the South Glens Falls Fire Department and title sponsor Carriage Traders.
“The weather doesn’t look too bad, the people are all getting excited and I can feel the holiday spirit creeping in!”
The parade Grand Marshal is Father Tony Childs, the pastor at St. Michael’s Church in South Glens Falls.
High school bands performing include South Glens Falls, Fort Edward, Whitehall and Mohonasen. Other musical performers include the Avant Guard Alumni Drum Line (double the size of previous years, Mrs. Quinn says), Bobby Dick and Susie Q, and Elvis tribute artist Kevin Harder.
Dance groups are the Bolton Dance Academy, Body Barre, Glens Falls Guiding Steps, Glens Falls YMCA Gymnastics and Arts team, and Reality Dance Studio.
Santa Claus will appear on a float built by Emerich Sales and Service employees and towed by an Emerich truck, Mrs. Quinn said. The parade will once again be broadcast live on Facebook.
Paradegoers are asked to donate a new in-the-box unwrapped toy for Toys for Boys and Girls, which benefits local children, or a non-perishable food item for the Moreau Community Center food pantry.
Donations may be made on the parade route just before the parade steps off at 1 p.m., Mrs. Quinn said.
The Joy Store started the parade in 1980 and presented it for 15 years. After the store closed, TD Bank led it for 15 years, from 1994 to 2008, Glens Falls National Bank from 2009 to 2013 and The Post-Star from 2014-2016.
The parade was in doubt after The Post-Star ended its run. No one came forward.
Then, in September 2017, Mrs. Quinn, a South High graduate and an occupational health nurse at Finch Paper, took the reins, and with the men and women of the South Glens Falls Fire Company involved, has kept the holiday tradition alive.
“The community support is incredible and I’m humbled to be part of it,” Mrs. Quinn said. “I cannot thank the Fire Company enough for their unending support and dedication to this parade.
“I’m so proud to be a member of the South Glens Falls Fire Company. Our motto here is #onefamily. We support each other, cheer each other on, and protect each other. We hope to make Tom Tracy proud this year and have a stellar parade.”
Announcing the parade will be WCKM’s Dan Miner and Pete Cloutier, seated in front of Jim Betit Auto Body on Saratoga Avenue. WCKM’s parent Regional Radio Group is exclusive media sponsor.
Float assembly starts at 9 a.m.
Line-up for larger vehicles and floats needing assembly begins at 9 a.m. at Carriage Traders, Kingpin’s Alley Bowling Center and Smart Wash Carwash. Judging will start at 11:30 a.m. for floats, and all participants should be in position in the lineup by noon. Bands and color guards will be judged during the parade.
Mrs. Quinn said a change this year is floats and groups will line up down Route 9 from the intersection with Feeder Dam Road. For years they have lined up down Feeder Dam, which has caused some logistical issues.
That area of Route 9 from Carriage Traders to Pine Road will be closed starting at 9 a.m., she said.
14 sponsors stepped up to help
Carriage Traders contributes $5,000 as title sponsor. Marine Corps Memorial Detachment No. 2 gave $700.
The seven $500 sponsors include The Chronicle, Southy’s, Finch Paper LLC, Parks Heritage Federal Credit Union, SUNY Adirondack, Essity and Umicore.
The $250 sponsors are the South Glens Falls Faculty Association, Blue Flame Gas, the South Glens Falls Chamber of Commerce, Bare Bones Furniture, Cuddle Bugs Boutique and the Halftime Bar and Grill.
Father Tony Childs is parade Grand Marshal
Father Tony Childs of St. Michael’s Church is the grand marshal of the 2019 South Glens Falls Holiday Parade.
“We chose Father Tony because he is so pro-community, especially in these last few years,” said parade organizer Meg Quinn.
“From his professionalism and compassion during Trooper Timothy Pratt’s funeral, to his sensitivity and flexibility during the funeral of one of our own active members, to the effort put forth during the Common Roots Fire, Father Tony has been there.
“During the Common Roots fire he showed up to the scene and offered the church and Parish Hall to anyone who needed it, whether to pray or just to keep warm. It was a chilly March night and the kind gesture was much appreciated.”
Father Tony will ride in a wagon pulled by a team of mini-horses from the Washington County Draft Animal Association, Mrs. Quinn said. — Gordon Woodworth
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