A group of children march down the center of Elkhorn’s North Wisconsin Street displaying artist Jan Castle Reed’s Christmas Cards during the 2012 Christmas Card Town Parade. Reed was commissioned for 14 years to paint the Christmas cards, reviving the tradition of artist Cecile Johnson, whose six watercolor paintings for Ford Motor Company in 1958 earned the city it’s “Christmas Card Town” title.

A group of children march down the center of Elkhorn’s North Wisconsin Street displaying artist Jan Castle Reed’s Christmas Cards during the 2012 Christmas Card Town Parade. Reed was commissioned for 14 years to paint the Christmas cards, reviving the tradition of artist Cecile Johnson, whose six watercolor paintings for Ford Motor Company in 1958 earned the city it’s “Christmas Card Town” title.

Annual Elkhorn Area Chamber of Commerce parade set for Dec. 6

By Kellen Olshefskicard

Editor

The Elkhorn Area Chamber of Commerce is preparing for its 33rd annual Elkhorn Christmas Card Town Parade, to be held in downtown Elkhorn at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 6.

Chris Clapper, executive director of the Elkhorn Area Chamber of Commerce, said earlier in November that while it was still in the planning stages and not all entries had been confirmed, the parade has always traditionally been a crowd pleaser.

Past year’s entertainers have included the infamous Wacky Wheel Walker, a daring acrobat who swings around his giant wheel as it rolls through the parade route, height-defying performers, walking on stilts high above the crowd, gingerbread men. Additionally, past years have included famous participants such as Bernie Brewer and the Klement’s Racing Sausages and the Milwaukee Admirals mascot, Roscoe.

And, of course, local school bands and community organizations will help make up what the chamber hopes will be the approximate 80 to 100 entrants, a number that has been fairly consistent over the years.

“We may have some surprises for everyone,” Clapper said.

And as tradition dictates, the parade will end with the big man himself, Santa Claus, along with the one and only Mrs. Claus, stopping for a delightful performance from a group of Elkhorn’s own elementary school students.

“At the end of the parade we have tons of little people who are going to sing for Santa,” Clapper said. “I think that’s a great thing to involve the schools and the community. The kids really look forward to it.”

Christmas giving

As in past years, Clapper said much of the money the parade raises will continue to go to a good cause, benefiting those in need in the community.

Rather than paying an entry fee, organizations are asked to donate either 10 non-perishable food items or canned goods or $10 to the Elkhorn Food Pantry in order to participate in the parade.

Clapper said the spirit of giving has been overwhelming amongst parade entrants in past years, donating hundreds of pounds to the local food pantry.

“We like to give back to the community as much as we can and this is one way we can do that,” she said.

Traditionally having themes each year for the Christmas Parade, Clapper said the chamber opted to go for a broader Christmas theme for the parade after receiving input from those who enter year after year. Clapper said trying to decorate for a different theme each year was trying for entrants.

“With the economic times recently, people said it was too difficult to decorate differently every year,” Clapper said. “So they can come up with whatever they want within the holiday scope.

“The only thing we ask is that the only Santa is at the end,” she said.

Other activities

New this year, Clapper said Elkhorn’s VFW Post is hosting a pancake breakfast from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., on Dec. 6, at the Elkhorn Area Middle School, 627 E. Court St. Tickets are available in advance from members of the post for $6 for adults; tickets at the door on Dec. 6 will cost $7. Tickets for children cost $4. Tickets are also available at the Elkhorn Area Chamber of Commerce, 203 E. Walworth St. For more information, call (262) 723-4979.

Additionally, Clapper noted the return of the annual Reindeer Run, hosted by the Elkhorn Recreation Department and the Elkhorn Running Club, from 9 a.m. to noon on Dec. 6 beginning at Sunset Park in Elkhorn, 200 Devendorf St. All money raised is dedicated to a Park Dedication Fund to replace outdated equipment.

All participants receive a Reindeer Run t-shirt, goodie bag and refreshments. Additionally, medals are awarded to the top three male and female finishers in each category, as well as the overall fastest male and fastest female. Prizes will also be given for the best holiday dressed.

Registration is from 8-8:30 a.m. the day of the race and costs $30. For more information on registration, call the recreation department at (262) 741-5114.

“Do the Reindeer Run, grab some pancakes and go check out the Christmas Parade, enjoy a day in Downtown Elkhorn,” Clapper said.

 

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