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Princeton Christmas parade brings holiday cheer

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PRINCETON — The annual Princeton Christmas parade overcame gloomy skies to bring holiday cheer to the community on Saturday.

This year’s grand marshal was Harold McDonald, a town resident known for his support of Princeton High School athletics and charitable events in the community.

The Princeton Women’s Club organizes the parade. Club President April Williamson, also the town clerk, said everything went wonderfully.

“We had lots of floats,” said Williamson. “Pink Robbins, owner of the Robbin’s Nest, donated the Santa sleigh. Charlie Greene and Gradie Hartley restored it in time for this year’s parade and did an awesome job.”

Williamson said the parade started five minutes early to avoid the threat of rain.

“There were no incidents and the temperature was perfect,” said Williamson. “The rain held off and I was tickled.”

Those who turned out agreed the parade was a family-friendly event.

“It’s our hometown,” said Princeton resident Anna Barbour. “It’s a family time, it’s easier to get a seat and you get to see people you know.”

Two families moved from out of state to Princeton six months ago and agreed it’s a wonderful place to live.

“It’s our first Christmas parade ever,” said Jill White. “In Iowa, where I’m from, it was too cold for parades. I love living here, Princeton is a great place.”

April Reed moved to Princeton from Florida.

“We enjoy the small-town atmosphere,” said Reed.

Five-month-old Regan Greene was attending her first parade.

Grandparents Jim and Vicky Lassister of Princeton said they enjoyed bringing her. Regan is the daughter of Beth and Charlie Greene.

Two Smithfield shih tzu dogs enjoyed the parade, except for the fire engines’ sirens.

Aydee Grace, 3, is owned by Dee Phillips and Bella, 4, is owned by Patsy Gerrell. Both dogs were fine until the fire engines made them restless and the owners decided they’d had enough parade.

In addition to the grand marshal and Santa, the parade featured the Princeton High School marching band, performers from Princeton’s Tippy Toes Dance Studio, antique tractors and floats entered by church and community groups.

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