Tulsa to see two seasonal parades Saturday
BY AMANDA BLAND World Staff Writer
Friday, December 09, 2011
12/09/11 at 5:38 AM
Holiday parade organizers in Tulsa are pulling out the stops for Saturday's parade showdown.
Two events - the annual Tulsa Holiday Parade of Lights and the first-time Tulsa Christmas Parade - kick off at 6 p.m. Saturday.
The Tulsa Christmas Parade's 88 registered entrants include floats featuring an FLS Microjet and an antique tractor in addition to parade mainstays such as Santa, clowns and horses, said parade board member David Arnett. So far, 25 churches are participating, as well, and organizers are still accepting applications, he said.
The downtown Parade of Lights expects about 60 entrants, including marching bands, four or five large balloons, and a top-secret mystery attraction, said Larry Fox, parade director and chairman of the Parade of Lights board.
The Tulsa Christmas Parade was founded after organizers of the decades-old downtown parade elected to change the name and remove Christmas from the title.
Fox said the name change to Parade of Lights was made to encourage inclusiveness.
Both sides said they've seen tremendous support.
The Parade of Lights sees an average of 20,000 spectators each year, Fox said.
The inaugural Tulsa Christmas Parade will wind south on Olympia Avenue from 71st Street through the Tulsa Hills shopping center.
Tulsa police are planning to provide officers on 71st Street to help with traffic control during the event, said Skipper Bain, special events coordinator for Tulsa.
The parade starts at 72nd Street so that motorists can still access the shopping-center parking lots at 71st Street and may cross over at Tower Drive, Bain said.
Both parades are accepting donations for area charities.
The Parade of Lights is highlighting The Salvation Army's Forgotten Angels program. Representatives in the parade will take unwrapped children's gifts for kids who've not been "adopted" for Christmas gifts through the organization's Angel Tree program.
The Tulsa Christmas Parade has partnered with the Tulsa 912 Project to gather monetary donations for the Oklahoma National Guard Families in Need program, as well as coats for Yale Cleaners' Coats for Kids.
Original Print Headline: 2 seasonal parades set for Saturday
Amanda Bland 918-581-8413