Christmas parade set

The 46th annual Patrick County Christmas Parade will be held December 2 at 2 p.m.

One Family Productions (OFP) announced its inaugural production of the parade, racing in with the theme of “Gearing Up For the Holidays.”

Clay Campbell, president of Martinsville Speedway, will serve as the grand marshal.

“We believe that Martinsville Speedway has served as a great institution over the past 70 years,” said Chris Prutting, of the OFP. “From the days with dirt on the track to newly lit lights in the sky, the Martinsville Speedway has been home to the Wood Brothers Racing family since the beginning and has been in our community and lives for decades.”

Line up for the parade begins at noon on Wood Brothers Drive in Stuart.  All participants are asked to be lined up by 1:30 p.m. to facilitate the introduction of some new and improved awards.

Parade awards will include a Grand Marshal Award, highlighting the float that most effectively embodies the “Gearing up for the Holidays” theme.

Members of the Patrick County Ministerial Association will select a winner for the “Spirit of the Season” award to the float which they believe embodies the true spirit of the holiday season.

Prizes for the two awards include donations made in the winner’s name to the Patrick County Community Food Bank and Caring Hearts Free Clinic.

Other awards will include a Chamber Award, highlighting a Patrick County Chamber of Commerce member entry and an award for Best in Show to local volunteer fire department and rescue squad entries.

All participants, including businesses, educational and non-profit organizations, churches, pageant title holders, marching bands, and others, should submit entry forms by November 27 to ensure a place in the lineup.

Entries are $20, with a $5 additional fee for late entries. Horse and riders may be registered for $5, and fire and rescue apparatus’ fees are waived.

Due to increased liability risks and safety concerns, no ATVs/4-wheelers will be allowed.

For more information call Prutting at (276) 692-7195, visit the Facebook page “Patrick County Christmas Parade,” or email questions to pcchristmasparade@gmail.com.

The Patrick County Jaycees presented the first Christmas parade in 1960, and began their annual rendition in 1972, making this the 46th consecutive Patrick County Christmas parade.

The Patrick County Jaycees are switching gears this year, passing the torch to OFP, which will strive to “serve the community by highlighting initiatives that work toward the betterment of the region,” according to Prutting, who noted sincere gratitude and admiration should be paid to the Jaycees for bringing Patrick County and the town of Stuart a truly wonderful and heartwarming tradition of floats and vehicles filling the community with holiday joy.

The Jaycee Creed states, in part,” that earth’s great treasure lies in human personality, and that service to humanity is the best work of life.”  The continual growth and service the Patrick County Jaycees brought not only to the parade, but many facets of Patrick County, are evident by long-lived events that include the Beach Music Festival and the parade.

It is One Family Productions’ hope to offer events that benefit the community, Prutting said, adding the organization uses its nonprofit status to benefit the Patrick County Food Bank and Caring Hearts Free Clinic through various service projects, event management and entertainment avenues throughout the year.

With the addition of the parade, Prutting said OFP is one step closer to fulfilling its mission of “partnering with local organizations and charities to help combat community deterioration.”

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