With no fear of holiday cheer, Holts Summit is planning two annual events next month which will celebrate the holiday season — a Christmas parade and a tree lighting.
The Christmas parade, a long-running tradition of the city, will begin at 2 p.m. Dec. 8 and run through the heart of Holts Summit. Around 20 floats and 30 classic cars are signed up for the event, as well as the Jefferson City High School Marching Jay Band and an appearance by Santa Claus accompanied by a few elves.
"It gives the citizens a chance to feel like they're included in something," Holts Summit City Clerk Hanna Lechner said. "You know, they always go to Jeff City or Fulton — their Christmas parades are usually bigger than ours — but at the same time, this kind of gives our town a bit of unity."
The parade will use a new route this year, starting at the corner of Branch and Center streets with floats lining up on St. Andrews Lane. The parade will cross the Center Street bridge over U.S. 54, turn right onto South Summit Drive and end at Summit Plaza.
Holts Summit decided to switch to the new route after safety concerns arose about its previous starting point along Karen Drive, which is a residential area.
People can register for the parade until Dec. 3 by calling Holts Summit City Hall at 573-896-5600.
The Christmas tree lighting will take place at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 3 behind the Holts Summit Police Department. The Holts Summit Soup Kitchen will provide free refreshments, such as hot chocolate, lemonade, cookies and other sweets. The North Elementary School Notables, a choir group, will be on hand to sing Christmas carols.
The guest chosen to throw the switch and light the tree will by Ashley Varner of Healthy Schools Healthy Communities.
"She does a lot for the city," Lechner said of Varner's efforts to expand resources for residents to use to become healthier. "She's always looking at new projects for us and always keeping the city at mind when she does anything."