Santa makes his way to our neck of the woods on Saturday Dec. 1 for the 28th annual Etobicoke Santa Claus parade.
The parade gets underway at 10 a.m. and runs along Lakeshore starting at Dwight Street and ending at Thirty Seventh Street. The parade runs until noon, and it takes about an hour from the beginning of the parade for Santa to come around.
This year’s parade will feature a handful of famous guests, ranging from the Grinch and Cinderella to members of the Argos and Maple Leafs – and of course Santa. However, the candy continues to be the biggest hit with the kids saysJudy Brandow, a representative for the parade
Etobicoke’s parade showcases a large number of bands. Brandow says there are about eight or nine bands that march in the parade, including the traditional marching band, a mariachi band and the magnolia brass band.
“We have lots of different kinds of bands so theres something for everybody, but the kids are still waiting for Santa and they’re more interested in their candy canes” said Brandow
As for when you should get to your spots Brandow says if you live nearby, all you have to do is listen for the sirens.
“People hear the sirens and then they rush up, so the kids don’t get cold, like at some of the bigger parades,” said Brandow. “It takes about 10-15 minutes after the sirens for the parade to get there.
Traditionally, the parade has had one Grand Marshal, who Santa salutes, however this year there will be multiple. A representative from each youth group marching will walk with the grand marshal group and lead the parade. Past grand marshals include, Argo legend Michael “Pinball” Clemons, Toronto Mayor John Tory and former CTV weatherman Dave Devall.
Following the parade, people will have the opportunity to skate with Santa on the skating trail at Colonel Samuel Smith Park. You can also treat yourself to free hot chocolate as well as food trucks and a silent Christmas auction. For those who don’t own a pair of skates, you can rent them for free at Play it Again Sports on the Queensway between Nov. 28 and 30 so long as you return them by 4 p.m. on Dec. 2.
As of now, the 14 day forecast is calling for temperatures of 3 degrees, feeling like 1 with the wind-chill, so a toque and some hot chocolate might be a good idea.