It looked more like a scene from the Macy’s parade than small town California, as watchers lined the streets two and three deep in some spots, angling for the best view of the holiday light parade.
Escalon’s annual Christmas on Main, hosted by the Escalon Chamber of Commerce, had it all on Saturday. From nearly non-stop entertainment on stage and vendor booths in the park, to fire pits for roasting s’mores and a visit by Santa himself, the day was picture perfect. There was abundant sunshine but just enough of a chill in the air to remind you it was a winter event.
The holiday light parade, which stepped off at 5:30 p.m., featured a number of brightly colored and uniquely decorated floats ranging from Rudolph leading the way on one to classic cars and the traditional motorcycles of the American Legion Riders following the colorguard. Recognized as this year’s Grand Marshal was Escalon librarian Jamie Turner.
Top honors in the parade went to the Ryan’s Ride entry, with the Bracco Family coming in at number two and third place honors going to Powerhouse Dance Studio.
Parade emcee Robert Swift kept up a steady stream of information regarding the parade entries and visited with many of the marchers as they made their way past the judge’s stand on Main Street.
Activities earlier in the day included the musical and dancing entertainment acts taking the stage, as well as a variety of children’s activities and the chance to purchase decorated ornaments for the giving trees to benefit local families in need.
Shoppers had the chance to peruse items for holiday gift giving, from toys to jewelry, Scentsy to handmade crafts.
The arrival of Santa Claus at the end of the half-hour long parade, however, was what many children were waiting for and they formed a line and waited patiently for the chance to get some one-on-one time with the big guy. Members of the Miss Escalon court assisted with the Santa visits and each child received a toy.
“I think I talked to every child from three counties,” Santa Claus said with a chuckle following the event.
Organizers said they were pleased with the day overall and many attending this year’s edition of Christmas on Main said it was the largest turnout they could remember in years, especially for the festive holiday parade.