Published 11:01 pm Friday, December 6, 2013
The town of Goshen was filled with the Christmas spirit as the town rang in the season with its annual Christmas parade.
It was a whole night of festivities in the small town. Vendors set up booths in the downtown area and distributed refreshments to the gathered crowd.
Jeffery Knight and the Hephzibah Baptist Church choir entertained the crowd before the parade started. Jared Buchanan, pastor at Goshen Baptist Church, read the Christmas story from the first chapters of Luke to put everyone in the proper mindset.
Then the parade started. Groups from all over Goshen drove through downtown on Christmas-themed floats and tossed out candy to the children in the crowd.
The parade closed with Santa riding in to town on a Goshen Volunteer Fire Department truck to the delight of all assembled.
Probate Judge Wes Allen, Goshen Councilman Bill McMaster and Goshen Councilwoman Jane Hughes judged the floats and selected the winners.
The Goshen Agricultural Academy won the competition with Goshen Methodist Church placing second and Goshen Baptist Church placing third.
Goshen Mayor Jack Waller said it was important for small towns like Goshen to come together for community events like the parade. “Goshen is a small town,” Waller said. “We like to keep our own identity. We’re a close-knit community. Everyone knows everyone. We love to get together and celebrate like this.”
While Goshen’s Christmas Parade is a new tradition, it is one that the people of Goshen have come to love. “This is the eighth year that we’ve had the parade,” Waller said. “The first year, we only had two or three floats. Last year, we had between 50 and 60. The parade has grown every year so far.”
Waller said the parade is a way for the community to get in to the Christmas spirit. “Everyone’s attitude changes around Christmas,” Waller said. “People are more giving and cheerful. Everyone loves Christmas. We received a donation that allowed us to have the kids’ pictures taken with Santa for free. It just shows how this community comes together.”