Letter: The joy of the Mathews Christmas Parade
There’s a special joy that comes from the anticipation and preparation for holiday events. One such event was the Old-Fashioned Mathews Christmas Parade.
We want to thank everyone who participated for their time, effort and enthusiasm in presenting a variety of floats, rescue vehicles, walking and motorized units. The participants gathered everything from a Victorian fireplace to a symbolic North Pole, huge wrapped packages, antique toys, hand-painted Christmas decorations, yards of garland and Christmas trees covered in candy canes and ornaments. There was even a unique Dallas Cowboys’ golf cart and a mini 18-wheeler.
The rain did not dampen spirits. There were a few soggy costumes, but everyone was layered against the cold, including one who notably described herself as the Pillsbury Dough Girl.
Thanks to all who donned the orange vests to help make the parade a success. Thanks to the veterans who proudly carried the American flag, the firemen and the deputies who rushed back from the Rotary Fishing Tournament to be part of the lineup, as well as the Mathews Rescue Squad and Virginia State Troopers.
There was great disappointment among the Thomas Hunter and Mathews High School bands who appeared in their uniforms and practiced holiday songs, but the woodwind instruments could not tolerate the rain, causing withdrawal from the parade.
Behind the scenes, help came from the sheriff’s office, the Bay School, the postmistress of Mathews Post Office, the YMCA and Charlie Lassiter from 99.1 FM. Dave Shuber’s son came to our rescue at the last minute by replacing a microphone cord that had a short.
Four-year-old Alex came all the way from Richmond to ride on a float in his PJs. Two-year-old Sage kept his pacifier firmly in his mouth while riding an ATV surrounded by little yellow duckies and three-foot-long pieces of bubble gum, which he gleefully dispensed to children along the parade route. Finally, Cub Scout elves warmed the heart of our Mathews secret Santa when they confided they had been good and shared their Christmas wishes. What joy the children bring to us as we celebrate the birth of baby Jesus and attempt to live the spirit of Christmas throughout the year.
The Christmas parade would not have been possible without the support of the county administrator and his staff and the endorsement of the Mathews County Board of Supervisors. Last but not least, we couldn’t have done it without Christy Walker’s very comprehensive parade notebook.
Thanks to everyone. Merry Christmas, peace on earth and goodwill toward men.
On behalf of the Mathews
Christmas Parade Committee