Lufkinites kicked off the holidays with lights and music during the annual Christmas Parade.
First Street, Second Street, Lufkin Avenue and more were closed off as floats of all kinds paraded past large crowds sprinkled with neon lights. This year’s parade theme was A Hollywood Christmas, and the entries showed off.
Real Graphics took a spin on “Home Alone” with its Real Alone float, complete with a movie poster with owner Chris Fleniken’s face mimicking Macaulay Culkin. The Grinch was featured on the Lufkin Police Department’s armored vehicle, and one group of kids dressed as “101 Dalmations.”
The overall float winner was The Christmas Attic. The top three floats in the commercial category were Pilgrim’s Pride, Strickland Plumbing and Big Dawg, while the top three non-commercial floats were Our Lady Guadalupe, the Marines and First Church of the Nazarene.
Before the parade began, Anna and Rene Tamez walked with 9-year-old Emma Tamez to meet their family. Emma said her favorite part is seeing Santa Claus come by on his float.
“This is a tradition to bring the kids out and see family friends we don’t normally see,” Anna said. “It’s a friendly environment we enjoy.”
The family said their favorite float they’ve seen so far in the years they’ve been coming is H-E-B’s shopping cart float. Anna said they never expected to see that.
A few streets over, you could hear 4-year-old Asia Owens singing along to the Christmas songs. Asia said her favorite part of the parade is “when Santa Claus goes by with his sleigh.”
“I love the Christmas parade with the music and the lights,” said Takesha Duirden, Asia’s mom. “It gets you in the mood for this time of year. It just makes you feel good.”
Asia’s siblings, 15-year-old Iverson Taylor and 10-year-old Catelyn McDaniel, said they love coming out with their family.
“It’s all about the candy,” Catelyn said.
“I like the lights and all the different vehicles,” Iverson said.
Eight-year-old Preston Haglund said he and 7-year-old William Haglund and 6-year-old Asa Walker have been to millions of Lufkin Christmas parades.
“We never miss it,” Preston said. “I love all the pretty lights.”
“I love getting candy and seeing the floats,” William said.
“It’s really jolly, and it’s part of Christmas,” Asa said.
Vickie Evans said the parade starts the family’s Christmas celebration.
“It’s a fun way to celebrate living in Lufkin and this great community,” Evans said. “My favorite part is the looks on their faces throughout the parade and how much fun they’re having. I hope they never ever get too old to enjoy it.”