The Nugget Newspaper - News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

By Jim Mitchell

Christmas Parade draws big crowd


Last updated 12/7/2004 at Noon

Santa and Mrs. Claus got the run-down on dozens of children's wish lists.

Snow flurries changed to clear skies just in time for the Sisters Christmas Parade. Children of all ages (adults are included in this category for parades) waved and cheered friends in the parade.

Thirty entrants, led by Honorary Marshal Cliff Clemens, followed the five blocks of Hood Avenue from Pine Street to Spruce Street. The parade officially crossed over to Washington Avenue and made its way back to the beginning.

Most spectators stayed on Hood Avenue.

An estimated 1,000 spectators, in places three to four deep, lined the road. The sunnier parts of the street drew more spectators — for good reason. The temperature at parade time was 37 degrees.

Clemens was escorted by Eugene television newsman Rick Dancer. Both rode in a red 1941 Cadillac convertible owned and driven by former Fire Chief Don Mouser.

Two teams of Pembroke Welsh Corgis, from Danceaker Kennels, were a favorite of the crowd as they exuberantly pulled wagons loaded with stuffed animals and other presents.

Redmond’s sled dog racer Rachael Scdoris rode atop her support truck holding a cuddly puppy, presumably a future member of her dog team. After a lengthy battle with the Iditarod Board of Directors, Scdoris, who is legally blind, was successful in winning approval to run the 1,200-mile race in March 2005.

Friends Katie and Kennedy, both five years old, were all smiles as they rode high above the crowd in historic Sisters Fire Department Engine No. 3, the envy of many a youngster. There were horses, donkeys, llamas, more dogs and more horses. But mostly there was fun.

One spectator was heard to say, “I like this parade because it is not a Hallmark event.” It was just a small-town gathering of folks having fun.

Shortly after the parade Santa and Mrs. Claus retired to the Sisters Area Chamber of Commerce Visitors Center and spent the rest of the afternoon greeting and talking with youngsters (and their parents) about what Santa would bring for Christmas. Children received balloons from one of Santa’s elves and from Frosty the Snowman.

Chamber personnel provided refreshments. Hot coffee was welcomed by parents with cold hands but the hot chocolate disappeared first, a favorite of both children and adults.

Cliff Clemens, in a quiet (and warm) chair inside the chamber office building, ended the day saying, “It’s one of the highlights of my ‘almost-99’ years.” Clemens will turn 99 next March.

As he left the celebration with his family Clemens added, “It’s been a great day.”

Despite the wintry weather, many adults and children would agree.


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