Due to COVID restrictions, the NF McDonnell and Sons annual Christmas Parade will return in a modified format once again in 2021. City of Mount Gambier will present Santa’s Boulevard, a drive by static Christmas spectacle including floats, lights and decorations to be held on Haig Drive at the Valley Lake over five nights in November.
The Mount Gambier Christmas Parade Advisory Group has been working through ways to deliver a COVID safe community Christmas event for the past few months.
“We had hoped to hold the parade in its traditional format as a procession down Commercial Street this year, however it just wasn’t feasible under the current SA Health Event Management Plan requirements,” City of Mount Gambier Events Team Leader Xarnia Keding said.
Last year, more than 800 cars streamed through Blue Lake Sports Park for the Santa’s Boulevard event to see the static Christmas display which included 15 floats, twinkling lights, decorations and Christmas music.
We are very excited to bring something bigger and better to our community once again this year, and this time in a fantastic new location along Haig Drive at the Valley Lake. - City of Mount Gambier Events Team Leader Xarnia Keding.
“The boulevard will span about one kilometre and have ‘pockets of delight’ along the route, featuring a spectacular light show, numerous floats and of course Santa will make an appearance."
The event will be held from Thursday 25 November to Monday 29 November between 7:00pm and 10:00pm each night.
"The new location will enable more families to view the display over a five-day period. The team is investigating an online free ticketing system to enable those who wish to attend to book a particular time slot to help reduce the waiting times in the line up and to help with the traffic.”
Provisions will be put in place to minimise the impact of bad weather on the floats.
“Last year we had to cancel the event on the second night due to bad weather as the floats are not designed to withstand rain. However, this year we will have marquees on location to store the floats, should they be required.”
Santa’s Boulevard will be a free, family friendly, smoke free, dry event for the entire community.
The Valley Lakes area will still be accessible during the day as per normal and will be closed to prepare for the event at 6:00pm daily.
Council’s community events team will submit a SA Health COVID safe plan for the event, a requirement for all gatherings and activities.
Media contact: City of Mount Gambier Media and Communications Coordinator Sharny Mclean on 8721 2401 or firstname.lastname@example.org