Pomona Christmas Parade set to be a night time event again after many years of being a day festivity
By Monica Rodriguez, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
POMONA >> After six years of putting on the Pomona Christmas Parade, the Downtown
Pomona Owners Association is going to make a change in the holiday event.The Owners Association will hold the parade at night, bringing back a much-loved tradition that is deeply ingrained in the memories of many of Pomona’s residents.
“We’ve had a lot of requests over the years” to have the parade at night, said Larry Egan, executive director of the Downtown Pomona Owners Association. People have shared stories of being on the downtown parade route, drinking hot chocolate with family members and watching the participants, he said.
“It’s a difficult undertaking. It’s got challenges, different kinds of challenges but we think we’re up to it,” he said.
One of the challenges has been a lack of lighting in parts of downtown but that’s going to be addressed with the help of portable lights.
The Pomona Police Department has some lights and so does the city’s Department of Public Works that parade organizers will use and if any additional lighting is needed the Owners Association will rent them, Egan said.
The parade is set to take place from 6 to 8 p.m. Dec. 12 and will have as a theme “Twas The Lights Before Christmas.” The event will take place that night even if it rains.
In addition to going back to being an evening event the parade will follow a new one-mile route that is slightly longer than the one used since the parade returned to downtown in 2009, Egan said.
The new route calls for the parade to begin at East Second and Gibbs streets and continuing west on Second then turning south on Park Avenue to Mission Boulevard. At Mission the parade will turn east and go north on Garey Avenue before turning east on East Third Street and returning to Gibbs.
In the past the parade concluded at the Pomona Civic Center Plaza where the city held Holiday at the Plaza.
The plan is now to move Holiday at the Plaza to Police Officer Shaun Diamond Plaza at Second and Thomas streets and have the event there on the same day as the parade, Egan said, adding the Owners Association is working closely with the city to carry out the move.
The time change is expected draw more parade participants, particularly school marching bands, he said. Some school bands from outside the immediate area have already submitted applications seeking to be part of the festivities.
Having the parade at night will bring many people to downtown for the parade who may decide to stay for the Second Saturday Art Walk.
“We’ll have a large number of youth groups and community groups that probably have never been to an art walk,” Egan said.
The Owners Association estimates that 4,000 to 7,000 spectators will line the parade route.
In December 2009 the parade returned to downtown after a number of years of taking place along Holt Avenue.
The parade originated downtown and according to newspaper accounts the parade came about as an outgrowth of the Christmas Preview. The annual event brought visitors to decorated downtown streets where merchants displayed the newest merchandise for the season.
In 1948 four marching bands paraded from different parts of downtown and came together at Second and Garey Avenue before they headed in different directions to offer outdoor performances. The following year a parade with bands and a grand marshal moved along Second between Rebecca and Elm streets.
Mickey Gallivan, president of the Historical Society of Pomona Valley, remembers attending many Christmas parades in Pomona at night.
The night-time parades seemed to have a more festive feel with people working lights into floats and to brighten the night, she said.
“It’s more in the spirit of Christmas,” Gallivan said.
Going back to a night-time parade is generating a great deal of excitement among participants and spectators, said Councilwoman Adriana Robledo, who represents a large part of downtown and who is on the parade organizing committee.
The event is something community members enjoy, she said.
“It shows off a lot of the good the community has,” Robledo said. “I think the night time dynamic is going to make it that much more fun.”
September 9, 2015
THE DOWNTOWN POMONA OWNERS ASSOCIATION (DPOA) IS SPONSORING AND HOSTING THE ANNUAL POMONA CHRISTMAS PARADE AGAIN THIS YEAR. A NEW TIME AND A NEW ROUTE ARE PLANNED FOR THIS YEAR’S PARADE.
THE THEME FOR THE PARADE IS “TWAS THE LIGHTS BEFORE CHRISTMAS”
THE PARADE WILL TAKE PLACE DECEMBER 12, 2015 FROM 6PM TO 8PM…A NIGHT TIME PARADE. THERE HAS NOT BEEN A NIGHT TIME CHRISTMAS PARADE IN POMONA SINCE 1967. THE PARADE ROUTE, WHICH IS ONE MILE LONG WILL BEGIN AT EAST 2nd ST. AND GIBBS AND TRAVEL WEST TO PARK AVENUE, THEN SOUTH TO MISSION BLVD, THEN EAST TO GAREY AVENUE, THEN NORTH TO E. 3RD ST., THEN EAST TO GIBBS.
OVER 100 ENTRIES REPRESENTING 3,000 PEOPLE, YOUNG AND OLD, WILL TAKE PART. BANDS, YOUTH GROUPS, EQUESTRIANS, CAR CLUBS, SERVICE ORGANIZATIONS, POLITICIANS, FLOATS, DRILL TEAMS, AND MORE WILL TAKE PART. IT IS ESTIMATED THAT 4,000 TO 7,000 SPECTATORS WILL VIEW THE PARADE.
THE PARADE ORGANIZING COMMITTEE HAS BEEN WORKING SINCE JULY TO PLAN THE PARADE. OVER 100 VOLUNTEERS, THE POMONA POLICE DEPARTMENT, AND THE CITY OF POMONA HAVE ALL JOINED FORCES TO HELP MAKE THE PARADE A SUCCESS.
APPLICATIONS TO PARTICIPATE IN THE PARADE ARE AVAILABLE AT DOWNTOWNPOMONA.ORG OR CALL THE DPOA OFFICE AT 909-469-1121. DEADLINE FOR ENTRY IS NOVEMBER 20, 2015
THE PARADE WILL TAKE PLACE RAIN OR SHINE.
For further information you may email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com or call us at 909-469-1121