Friday, November 28, 2014

Prepare to be Dazzlefested tonight

This year, I wanted to make sure we all got a good look at the Lucas County Historical Society's entry in tonight's annual lighted Christmas parade --- Dazzlefest as it's being styled this year.

Last year, while trying to be in two places at the same time, I put off taking photos until the parade itself, and that didn't work well. So after Thanksgiving dinner yesterday, I waddled down to the barn and took these.

Dazzlefest begins officially at 6 p.m. today with a holiday stroll around square to admire the live seasonal window displays and enjoy refreshments inside many businesses and professional offices. A youth scavenger hunt begins at the same time. The Memorial Tree of Lights on the west lawn of the Courthouse also will be lighted.

Little Miss Merry Christmas and Little St. Nick will be crowned at 6:15 p.m. at the gazebo and the parade itself begins at 7 p.m. Afterwards, youngsters are invited to visit with Santa at his North Pole headquarters (the conference room of the Chamber/Main Street office on the east side of the square). 

This is a wonderful event that draws a huge crowd and gives some idea of what the atmosphere on Chariton's square must have been like a century ago when everyone came to town to shop and socialize on weekend evenings (Dazzlefest always is held on the Friday night after Thanksgiving).

Historical Society board member Kay Brown is the creative genius and prime mover behind the float, assisted by Grounds Committee members and others. Rex Johnson created the red-nosed reindeer that's pulling the sleigh this year. The one-horse open sleigh is from the museum collection. It will have passengers tonight.

Jim Secor will be pulling the float with his pickup and --- in case you're puzzled about how floats like this are powered, there will be a generator in the back of the truck.

Anselm the Anglican tiger, who usually reposes in the kids' area of the St. Andrew's parish hall, has pride of place under the tree at the rear of the float. We decided he deserved an outing.

In addition, Bob Ulrich and Jerry Pierschbacher roasted peanuts in the Piper's roaster earlier this week, we've bagged these with hard candy and will give the result away in the Chamber/Main Street Office between 6 and 7 p.m. We weren't able to get quite as many raw peanuts as we'd have liked --- there's competition for them this time of year; so the supply is limited. Hurry!

A huge amount of credit for organizing this year's event goes to Cindy Sellers, or as Joe calls her, "The Czarina of Dazzlefest." It's going to be lots of fun and temperatures are moderating, so don't miss it!

Dazzlefest is a project of Chariton Area Chamber/Main Street.

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