Now that wonderful Thanksgiving festivities are over, the spirit of Christmas has come rolling in and what better way to kick of the season than with two Christmas parades!

The 63rd Annual Orange Jaycees Christmas parade theme this year will be “A Retro Christmas” and will begin on Friday, Dec. 2 at 6:30 p.m. The parade will start at the MacArthur Shopping Center parking lot and will end at Lamar State College-Orange.

Entry forms may be picked up at NAPA Auto Parts on MacArthur Drive, Artcraft Printing on Western Avenue or at the Greater Orange Area Chamber of Commerce on 10th Street and Green Avenue. To receive an entry form via email, please email the Orange Jaycees at

They’ve had approximately 60 entries, but expect to have around 80 come Friday night. Each entry is asked to donate a new, unwrapped toy in lieu of an entry fee. The toys will be donated to the Salvation Army of Orange for the children of families facing financial difficulties in Orange County.

The Grand Marshall for this year’s parade will be Rodney Townsend, a family law and personal injury attorney in Orange.

“The Jaycees’ host the only Santa in the parade,” Niki Monceaux with the Orange Jaycees said. “We rotate the fire departments in the city to take turns driving him [Santa] in the parade.”

The fire department in Little Cypress will be chauffeuring Santa in this year’s parade.

The parades give Orange County Cowboy Church an opportunity to show off their new chuck wagon pulled by the team of Peter and Paul.

“They’re a matched set of Shires horses that [Don Moorman] uses to pull different wagons. Their trained as a team,” Pam Scales Crew said.

The church acquired the chuck wagon during the summer “it came from Oklahoma, it’s an authentic replica of an 1800’s model chuck wagon.”

Crew said the chuck wagon has been on display at the church, but they haven’t had it out in the public much.

“It’s the first time it’s been in a parade in Orange County.” The church is participating in both the Orange and Bridge City parades.

She said the wagon was purchased to be used as part of the outreach program for Cowboy Church. “So far it’s been at the Winnie Rice Festival and the Bridge City Heritage Festival.”

Crew said the church will also have a float featuring the Cowboy Cross Band.

For more information on the Orange Jaycees’ Christmas Parade, please contact Monceaux at 409-289-6459.

The Third Annual Bridge City Chamber of Commerce’s Lighted Christmas Parade theme is the “Spirit of Christmas” and will begin on Saturday, Dec. 3 at 7 p.m. The parade will begin at the First Baptist Church and will continue down West Roundbunch to the Bridge City Elementary School.

This year’s parade marshall will be the 2011 Junior Girls World Series team members. The members of the All-Star team are Hannah Faulk, Kellyn Cormier, Brooke Derouen, Bailee Bacon, Faith Kaufman, Sabryn Crain, Kaleigh Carter, Skylar Kahla, Katelyn Dickerson, Kasey Frederick, Haley Mills, Harleigh Myers and Ashlyn Mitchell; and coaches Julie Kahla, Justin Fredrick and Hilton Bacon.

This year’s parade will feature a variety of lighted entries from local civic organizations, school groups, businesses, and individuals. The parade will conclude with a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, Don and Angie Breaux.

Those interested in participating in the parade are encouraged to stop by the following locations to pick up an entry packet: Bridge City Animal Hospital-Dr. Albert Pugh, Chicken Express-Bridge City location, Bridge City City Hall, Dupuis Tire Service, Saiser Le Jour Day Spa, Serendipity Chicks and Texas State Optical- Dr. Heidi Doucet.

Parade judges will be Jerald Smith of Collision Clinic, Beverly Satir of Golden Triangle Family Care, and Stephanie Sonnier and Jo Walton-Wiedenfield of Complete Staffing. The parade will be led by Bridge City Police Chief Paul Davis and Constable Mark Philpott.

The original intent of having Bridge City’s parade the day after the Orange Jaycees’ parade was to offer those decorating a float a chance to use their float more than once during the holiday season.

All entries are encouraged to “light up” their floats, trucks, bikes and other portions of the float as much as possible so that the spirit of Christmas can be seen and enjoyed by all.
For more information or in the event of bad weather for the Bridge City parade, please call 735-5671.

About Nicole Gibbs

Editor of The Record Newspapers