Park Board continues Christmas parade, festival plans


The Italy Park Board continued its plans for a Second Annual Christmas Parade and Festival Monday evening at its monthly meeting. The festival is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 5, in downtown Italy from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. The parade will kick off festivities at 10 a.m.

The various park board members are in charge of the committees: vendor booths, Janet Campbell; advertising, Jason Escamilla, Ronda Cockerham; donations, Bruce Utley; volunteers, entertainment, activities, decorations, Clover Stiles; and parade, Lisa Mott.

Cockerham said a portion of the hotel/motel tax the city receives may be used to advertise this holiday festival. She explained that final approval for the funds must come from the city council.

She is checking into the purchase of a sign to hang across Main Street advertising the upcoming event. She also plans to get a sign made for the stage that lists the various events and times.

Campbell said she only had eight vendors lined up at this time but felt many more would register closer to the festival date.

Utley told members that he has received 15 donations thus far and still has many more to contact.

Stiles said she is contacting schools and churches searching for entertainment throughout the event. Besides musicians and dancers, she is looking for a magician and puppet shows.

The committee discussed whether they should put ornaments on a Christmas tree that will be located in front of the city sign in downtown Italy. The group eventually decided to use lights and add tinsel, if needed.

Stiles said several children’s activities are pending. She would like children to be able to decorate cookies and do various crafts. She is working on getting photos with Santa, getting a train or some type of ride for the children as well as bounce houses.

She is also trying to block all parking in the downtown area except for the handicapped parking. She said safety issues of cars moving in and out of the parking spaces and children darting in and out across the street were the reason for this request.

Stiles added that it gets discouraging when people do not respond immediately but she assured them that many will want to be a part of the festival and parade as time draws near.

The Lions Club plans a pancake breakfast from 7-10 a.m. at the Wayne Boze Building.

Vendor and parade entry forms are available from city hall. Contact Cockerham at 972-483-7329 for more information.

The park board committee plans a called meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 17, at 6:30 p.m. in council chambers.