WEIRTON - The Weirton community will be ringing in the holidays Saturday with the annual Weirton Christmas Parade.
The parade is organized each year by the Weirton Area Chamber of Commerce and will begin Saturday at 11:30 a.m.
This year's event is being sponsored by First Choice America Community Federal Credit Union, Weirton Medical Center, West Virginia Northern Community College and Tri-State Audiology.
"Dennis Jones from the Weirton Area Museum is our grand marshal," Weirton Chamber President Brenda Mull said.
Many local businesses and organizations will be on hand to help usher in the Christmas cheer, traveling down the parade route on Main Street between Virginia Avenue and Marland Heights Road.
"We have about 74 entries," Chamber Office Manager Amber Nest explained.
Among those entries are eight commercial floats, made available by the chamber. Those commercial floats include two from the Weirton Christian Center which will be sponsored by Starvaggi Industries; the Make-A-Wish Foundation sponsored by Jack Fowler State Farm Insurance, R.E. Saxon Jewelers, Paper & Press Ink, Steel City Monkey Bars by Gorgeous Garage, Awesome Signs and Mainstream Physical Therapy; and, of course, the float carrying Santa Claus, which will be sponsored by James White Construction and Tri-State Medical.
With any community event, there also will be a little bit of competition accompanying the parade.
"We're doing the traveling trophies again," Nest said.
The traveling trophies were added to the parade in 2009, and whichever entry receives the awards will get to keep the trophy until next year's parade.
This year, the trophies will be awarded to first place in the commercial floats and first place in the non-commercial floats. Judges this year are Julie Johnston, Hazel Powell and Gloria Jerrel.
Mull advises all participants for the parade to be registered by 10:30 a.m. the day of the parade, this especially will be the case for anyone dropping off children participating in the festivities.
"The street will be closed at 11 a.m.," Mull said.
The parade will not be broadcast live on television this year, instead being filmed for a later airing because of a conflict in scheduling with football games, Mull said. They parade will be available for viewing on Saturday on RTV-9 and online at www.wtov9.com. It will be shown again on WTOV-9 at 11 a.m. on Nov. 28.
(Howell can be contacted at email@example.com)