Bigger Christmas Parade Planned
The marching bands will be back and Santa will definitely be coming to town to later meet with kids at the fire house for a bigger Christmas parade than the one nearly cancelled in 2020.
Last year, when the COVID-19 pandemic threatened to be the Grinch that would steal Christmas, Ken Carraway, who is the primary parade planner as Chief of Wesson Volunteer Fire Department, which organizes the traditional parade, had to scale back the event. Wesson Attendance Center didn't send its marching band in the midst of the pandemic. Nor did Co-Lin's Show Band, Collette dancers and cheerleading squad make it because of the college's early closing in November. Even Santa Claus was a question mark, although he finally did come to town. And many of the usual participants were also cautious about committing to the parade.
All that has changed, according to Carraway. The marching bands will return and Santa will arrive as part of the parade and meet kids from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. with his bag of goodies at the WVFD station, where cookies and punch will also be served.
Carraway is still recruiting parade participants, hoping to recruit floats and vehicles that will feature members of the Wesson High School homecoming court and beauty and beau winners, area government officials, business leaders and community service volunteers; trucks from Wesson Volunteer Fire Department, siren-sounding cars from Wesson Police Department and marchers from the America Legion, Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts and Girl Scouts. Anyone who would like to participate in the parade should contact the fire department through email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone (601-265-1694). There will be a registration form on the Wesson Volunteer Fire Department Facebook page.
The parade will roll at 4 p.m. on Friday, December 3, at 4 p.m. following its normal route south through town and then back north. Nena Smith dancers will assemble at Wesson Baptist Church, while all other parade participants will line up in the old Sunflower building parking lot.
Lights and decorations on Highways 51 and side streets downtown will provide an appropriate Christmas ambiance for the parade.
As usual on the Sunday before the parade -- November 28, members of the WVFD will get the town's decorations out of storage and install them on utility polls throughout the area.
The Spirit of Christmas Awards program sponsored by Wesson News, the Wesson Chamber of Commerce (C of C) and Wesson Garden Club (WGC) will incentivize businesses to decorate their locations. The C of C presents cash prizes to local businesses in recognition of distinctive Christmas decor and creative displays as judged by WGC, which also recognizes residential decorating through its Yard of the Month program.
Several weeks earlier -- on November 17, another traditional Wesson holiday event cancelled last year in the midst of COVID-19, will return to help prepare the community for the season of joy and cheer: Co-Lin's community luncheon at the Thames Conference Center on its Wesson campus.
For the eighteenth year, some 300 persons, including Co-Lin employees, members of community social and civic organizations, employees of area businesses, families and individuals will be on hand at the buffet luncheon featuring turkey, ham, country vegetables, salads and a variety of desserts from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The community event evolved from a 2002 marketing showcase of the Thames Conference Center facilities and food service into a venue for food, fun and fellowship involving an increasingly wider community. Reservations are recommended. Contact Brenda Orr (601-643-8671) or Tricia Russell (email@example.com).