Tri-City Main Streets alive with Parades & Activities
Covid challenges couldn’t stop Christmas parades from marching or treasured holiday traditions this year, but it did inspire some changes. Simpsonville’s Christmas parade was a drive-through style event and Mauldin’s Christmas parade had fewer participants than previous years. Fountain Inn’s Christmas carriage rides were by appointment only. Despite the differences in celebration, one thing remained the same – the Christmas spirit was alive and well in all our local communities.
Mauldin Christmas Parade
All locals wanted for Christmas was a little normalcy and holiday cheer at the Mauldin Christmas parade on December 5th at 2 p.m. Temperatures were warmer than average just like the hearts of attendees. Several hundred people lined the streets on East Butler Road for a taste of holiday delight! Crowds weren’t as large and floats were few, and not a single attendee got run over by a reindeer! Presented by the Mauldin Chamber of Commerce, the theme this year was, “The Magic of Christmas.” Although high school bands, cheerleaders and football players weren’t able to attend, whistles and cheering were loud for all to hear. The Korean Drummers won first place for beautiful sounds and clothing while strumming beats on their float. Fire fighters and Police escorts led the parade with a sign that read, “Thank you first responders” to make spirits a little brighter. Oh, what fun it was to watch Santa and Mrs. Claus wave to everyone on a fairytale-like white horse drawn carriage. Even with a minimal audience, participants brought the mighty spirit of Christmas.
Simpsonville Christmas Parade 2020
There’s no place like being home for the holidays in Simpsonville. Or like attending the unique annual Christmas parade in an automobile for a drive-through experience. The parade is normally held with floats driving down Main Street! However, on Sunday, December 6th at 3 p.m., the parade was held in Heritage Park. Within two hours, 700 vehicles entered the park and dropped by the Dennis Waldrop Way to view local businesses and organizations holiday displays and performances. It was hosted by the Simpsonville Chamber of Commerce and City of Simpsonville. The parade was presented by Weichert, Realtors – Shaun & Shari Group, and the reindeer sponsor was Marshall Orthodontics. Parade supporters included Advance America, Grace Internal Medicine and U Call I Haul SC, LLC. Winners were chosen with ballots by spectators. First place went to Let’s Saddle Up/Tiny Trotters, second place went to Re/Max Nikki Sword and Jordan Johnson and third place was awarded to Crossroads 4 Coffee. Tiny Trotters featured three adorable miniature horses wrapped like presents in holiday bows and unicorn horns.
Appropriately themed, “Home for the Holidays” after this year’s stay-at-home order and social distancing, Simpsonville captured the essence of the holidays. It’s all about being home together and staying local. Children hollered here comes Santa Claus as he rode in on his sleigh with a red-nosed reindeer. His reassuring appearance reminded them he knows when they’re sleeping, he knows when they’re awake, he knows if they’ve been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake!
Fountain Inn Christmas Parade & Activities
Fountain Inn residents were rockin’ around the annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony to live music on Saturday, December 5th from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. The Rudolph Run started at 6 p.m. while masks and social distancing were required. On December 10-20th, Christmas carriage rides were scheduled by appointment only to keep residents’ safe. Residents also enjoyed live music downtown on December 18 – 19th from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. There were several sponsors for Fountain Inn events including Industrial Power Corporation, Frazier Engineering P.A., Duke Energy and several others.
Crowds seemed to sing “Hallelujah!” at the Fountain Inn Christmas parade on Wednesday, December 9th at 5:30 p.m. A record number of neighbors gathered outdoors to celebrate together. There was an extra amount of excitement in the air after a tough year. Marching bands could not participate, and candy couldn’t be thrown due to covid. However, plenty of fun was still had including award winning floats and entertainment. The Chapman Foundation won first place, Long & Sons received second and Re/Max Nikki Sword took third place. Colorfully dressed ladies danced like sugar plums on behalf of The Chapman Foundation. Grand Marshalls including Maureen Tiller (Future Fountain Inn High School Principal), Lindsey Beam (Instructional Coach), Cathy Nolen (Secretary), Robby Bell (Athletic Director) and the future football team of the new high school brought joy to the world. Hidden Pasture Farms escorted Santa down Main Street with an antique tractor and live unicorns! His message to believers was a cinch – don’t be a grinch and have yourself a very Merry Christmas!