Madison Christmas Parade to boost season’s charm

MADISON – Pretty dolls. Big-wheel trucks. LEGOs or Lincoln Logs. Maybe a board game. These toys will match the “Santa’s Workshop” theme for the 2023 Madison Christmas Parade.

This year’s parade on Dec. 9 will start at 5 p.m. The Parks and Recreation Department with the City of Madison is coordinating the parade.

Parade units from mom-and-pop businesses, school clubs and children’s extracurricular groups retain the nostalgic charm of small-town life. Spectators can plan to see elected officials riding by, with musical groups, dancers and baton twirlers proudly marching (and maybe pitching candy in your direction).

The registration deadline for parade participants is 5 p.m. on Nov. 22. To access the application, visit www.madisonal.gov, click “Community” and then click “Special Events.” Scroll to the “2023 City of Madison Christmas Parade” section, and click “Registration Link.”

Individuals can email completed registration forms to SpecialEvents@madisonal.gov; mail the form to Madison Christmas Parade, 8324 Old Madison Pike, Madison AL 35758; or take the printed form to Dublin Park’s front desk, 8324 Old Madison Pike.

A representative from each parade unit must attend a mandatory meeting on Dec. 4 at 6 p.m. in Council Chambers of Madison City Hall. If a representative does not attend the meeting, organizers will pull the unit from the parade. At the meeting, representatives will receive procedures for the parade, lineup and drop-off, along with each participant’s assigned number.

Organizers encourage parade entrants to decorate floats or vehicles to follow the theme, “Santa’s Workshop.” A unit cannot have a ‘live Santa.’ The ‘real’ Santa will ride in his sleigh as the parade anchor.

Parade units will line up on Plaza Boulevard. The parade will proceed south on Hughes Road to Insanity Complex at the corner of Hughes and Mill roads.

A float or vehicle must be secure with raised sides on vehicles. Adults must always supervise all children.

If the unit wants to distribute candy, buy weighted candy (no lightweight brands). A unit can have participants walk alongside and hand out candy.

Judges will rate the units during lineup on Plaza Boulevard and while the parade is mobile. During the parade, a unit cannot stop or give demonstrations. The parade will move at all times.

In case of rain, the Christmas parade will shift to Dec. 10 at 2 p.m.

Winners will receive their awards at an upcoming meeting of Madison City Council.

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