Hundreds of people lined Front Street in downtown Wilmington Sunday night for the city’s annual Christmas parade.
Spectators of all ages, many decked out in festive holiday garb, viewed an hour-long procession that featured floats, antique cars, local politicians, boy scouts, beauty queens and lots of Christmas cheer.
The famously anti-Christmas character the Grinch also made an appearance, but his lack of spirit was offset by the many holiday well-wishers and of course, Santa Claus. The season’s jolly star brought up the end of the parade, riding down Front Street in style on a Wilmington Fire Department fire engine with his wife, Mrs. Claus.
Though there was a slight chill in the air, many parade goers said it was the warmest the weather has been on parade night in a few years, making it a good night to bring the whole family. There were even four-legged spectators at the event, with some dressed in Santa hats and Christmas sweaters.
Despite occurring at the same time as a football game featuring the undefeated Carolina Panthers (some fans popped in and out of the bars along Front Street to periodically check the score), the crowds were entertained, and the holiday spirit could be felt throughout the duration of this year’s Wilmington Christmas Parade.