Santa Claus is coming to town, but the annual Christmas parade in the Town of Amherst will be very different from past ones due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Instead of the floats passing by people sitting on or standing next to the curb, the parade will be a stationary one. The floats will be parked on one side of Tantramar Crescent and folks will drive by in their own vehicles to view them.
“The community well-being team has worked with the Y’s Men club, the Amherst Police Department and Amherst Fire Department to develop a viable plan for the Christmas parade,” Cheryl Laliberté, the town’s well-being manager, said.
“While it will be different than past years because of the pandemic, we believe this event will be a fun way to kick off the holiday season.”
Tantramar Crescent will be closed to traffic at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 28, 2020, in order to line up the floats. When it opens to viewers at 5 p.m., it will become a one-way street, with vehicles entering from Tupper Boulevard and exiting onto Industrial Park Drive. The parade will end at 9 p.m.
For safety reasons, no one will be allowed to walk the route. However, the Cumberland County Transportation Services will provide free transportation for those who do not have access to a vehicle.
Members of the Amherst Police Department and Y’s Men club will be directing traffic.
The theme of this year’s parade is a Nova Scotian Christmas.
As in past years, prizes will be offered for best overall theme, best large commercial float, best small commercial float, best charity or non-profit float, best youth involvement and Dayle’s Holiday Spirit Award.
Unlike past years, the number of people who can be on a float will be limited to four and they must remain six feet apart at all times. This is being done to ensure adherence to the COVID-19 public health orders.
Anyone with questions can contact parade organizer Charlie Seymour at 902-667-4670 or the Amherst Recreation Department at 902-667-3352.