La Porte Welcomes Santa with Downtown Parade

By: Erica Wirsing Last Updated: November 30, 2013

Santa could not have chosen a more beautiful day to make an appearance in La Porte than on the last Saturday of November. On top of a fire truck, he brought up the rear of a parade of floats that traveled down through downtown La Porte. The parade included many local groups; a perfect way to celebrate not only Christmas but also Small Business Saturday as well.

The parade finished at the La Porte Chamber Of Commerce building, also known as “Santa’s Village,” where Santa unloaded and talked with kids who anxiously waited to tell him their Christmas list. Also at the end of the parade, guests and parade participants alike could enjoy hot chocolate was donated by the B and J’s American Café, The La Porte High School Show Choir singing Christmas carols, free mini-train rides, food provided by the Country Griller, and much more.

“I love this event because it is a great tradition. Lots of folks were out today because of the beautiful weather. I also saw lots of new floats, which is great,” said Mayor Blair Milo, who rode in the fire truck with Santa.

“It was awesome participating in the parade,” Stacey Gembala said, secretary and photographer of the Guardian Riders, who brought about 20 participants and 10 motorcycles to the parade.

Guests to the parade came for many different reasons for a large turnout from the community.

“We came so the kids could see Santa,” Kisa Kniola said.

“I came to see my daughter in the Kiwanis Kids float and to get in the holiday spirit,” said Julie Bellah.

Guest Julie Rice Zurek and her family also participated because, “It starts the holiday for us!”

Tiffany Bley, Downtown Director for the Chamber of Commerce, said “It is the largest turnout I have ever seen. I am happy to see so many floats as well.”

Bley was manning a booth that celebrated Small Business Saturday by distributing “La Porte” Christmas tree ornaments and other items provided by American Express.

“It’s a good way to connect with the community and promote small businesses,” Bley said of the booth at the parade.

At Santa’s Village, the winner of the Santa Parade Coloring Contest will enjoy brunch with Santa and $20 BJ Bucks at B & J’s American Café on Saturday, December 14 at 10am. All entries will be mailed to troops oversees this holiday season. The Parade was presented by the La Porte Chamber of Commerce and the La Porte Kiwanis Club.

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