Crowds pack State Street to see holiday light parade
● By Richard Gaw
For 364 days of the year, State Street in Kennett Square serves as a mile-long marketplace of eclectic shops, businesses and cafes, as well as the headquarters of Genesis HealthCare. For one night a year, however, the street becomes an avenue of holiday dreams, and last Friday night, State Street glowed with the magic of the season.
Before an overflow crowd of more than 1,000 children of all ages, the annual Holiday Light Parade and Open House was an hour-long thread of businesses, schools, organizations and individuals, who worked their way up the street to the strains of holiday carols. With Kennett Square Mayor Matt Fetick serving as master of ceremonies, the parade kicked off at 6:15 and welcomed performances by the Kennett High School Marching Band, KitSpins, the Kennett Area Theatrical Society, the Longwood Performing Arts Dance Company, 50/50 LG Entertainment and an army of colorful volunteers, each of whom handed out treats to the crowd.
Brightly lit vehicles from several local fire companies then came roaring up the street, quickly followed by stunning floats created by some of Kennett Square's most recognizable and respected businesses. Finally, Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus arrived, in time with the annual lighting of the Christmas tree just outside of La Verona. Beside the glow of the tree, the Clauses heard the gift lists of dozens of children.
The evening was a unique blend of celebration and commerce, as several shops welcomed visitors to stroll around and purchase some early holiday gifts.
The following is a list of participants in the 2014 Kennett Square Light Parade:
Bob Stenhan : Former Ringling Brothers Clown
Kit Spins: Former Cirque Du Soleil Performer
Longwood Performing Arts
Parade Stars: Brick Garage/Pack Rats Place
Kennett Square High School Marching Band
Mercer Restorations: Frank
KSI Crafts Beer Boutique
KATS: Walking Group
Unionville Harvest Queen Carly Rechenberg and Princess Shannon White
Kennett Square Mushroom Festival Presents Midnight in the Square (Accompanied by ToJo Mushrooms)
Anson B. Nixon
1964 Sunbeam Tiger: Elea Feit
WWII Jeep: Robert Rumbold
Kennett Square Historical Commission’s 1922 Model T Ford Canopy Express: Jeff Feit
Eric Kelleher 1955 Ford Tractor
E & H Appliance
Manfredi Cold Storage
Phillips Mushrooms Woodlands
50/50 LG Entertainment: Dr. Dre Money, Walt Anderson and The Life Gamblers Band
Krapf Bus Company
Kennett Square Fire Company
Avondale Fire Company
Po Mar Lin Fire Company
Longwood Fire Company
Harrop Custom Farming
Kennett Mini Storage
Meadow Spring Farms (Jamie Hicks)- 4 vehicles
Billy Hicks with Hicks Lawn and Landscaping
Hugh Lofting Timber Framing
Longwood Performing Arts (2nd performance)
Santa & Mrs. Claus accompanied by Lou Mandage
To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.