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Plymouth Holiday Parade kicks off the season



PARADE
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There weren't many cheers for the Grinch when he made an appearance in the Plymouth Hometown Holiday parade. (Photo by Donna Rhodes) (click for larger version)
December 09, 2021
PLYMOUTH — Although he did manage to make an appearance in Plymouth last Saturday evening, the Grinch still couldn't steal the spirit and joy of the holiday season during the weekend long Hometown Holiday Celebration.

After a day filled with everything from children's activities to wreath making and a concert, Main Street overflowed with crowds to welcome back the community's traditional holiday parade after it was unfortunately canceled last year due to the corona virus.

Starting the festivities at sunset on Saturday was long time Plymouth resident Tim Keefe and his granddaughters, Hailey and Megan Matava, who led the crowd in holiday caroling. O'Keefe then went on to share emcee duties with Man-On-the-Street Cabbie McGlone as the parade prepared to roll through town at 5 p.m.

"We missed this last year. How good does it feel to have it back?" McGlone asked the crowd as the parade got underway.

Cheers rang out as Lt. Michael Clark led the lineup of more than 20 floats and marching entries along the route. Cub Scout Pack 56 were right behind his cruiser, waving to the throngs of people lining the sidewalks and lawns.

Organizers of the event, Plymouth Rotary, were next in line, followed by an enthusiastic crew from Plymouth Area Community Closet, and the Pemi-Baker Girls Scouts, who were all decked out for the holidays.

Plymouth State University's Panther mascot marched before a Charlie Brown float filled with students dressed as the lovable, classic "Peanuts" characters, including Snoopy who was perched atop his doghouse. The school's Zamboni was behind them, accompanied by proud local youth hockey players.

Other younger students also got into the swing of things. Plymouth Elementary School's middle school Student Council and the Plymouth Huskie Flag Football Team and Cheerleaders were close behind with their festive floats and marchers.

Older residents took part as well and there was a big cheer for the lively moves of Jazzercise members as they danced their way down the street.

Plymouth Parks and Rec employees and participants managed to get some rest after their busy day of fun and games at PES to present a colorful float that night as well. Circle Program was close behind, followed by a huge presence of floats, marchers and decorated cars in a joint entry from Ladders, Step Ladders, and Flippin' Furniture, local businesses who support veterans through their sales of clothing, household goods and much more. Accompanying them were the signature giraffes of Ladders, each bearing the name of one of Santa's reindeers.

Mountain Village Charter School had another large entry that included a huge tent, designed to depict a snow-covered mountain, with boys and girls marching ahead, each ready to get out to hike, ski and recreate in the great outdoors.

Following the students was ReStore/Habitat for Humanity and Cold Spring Resort of Ashland with fun entries of their own.

"It's great to see businesses from outside of Plymouth joining the fun," McGlone said as the resort's entry passed by.

Comfort Keepers, serving seniors and disabled person in towns throughout the region, were also present in the parade, as were Pemi Valley Forest Products and a lively, spirited crew from Little Antlers Center for Learning.

A group of friendly dogs from both White Mountain College for Pets and the Laughing Stock Farm in Bridgewater had people excited to greet them as they took part in this year's parade as well.

From there the fire trucks from Waterville Valley and Campton-Thornton rolled through town just ahead of the most anticipated appearance of all- Plymouth Fire-Rescue's tower truck where the "Man of the Hour" was perched on top.

To cheers of "Santa! Santa!" Jolly Old Saint Nick made his way slowly into town, waving to the crowd and delighting all the young boys and girls.

As the parade came to an end, crowds then made their way to Green Street for one-on-one visits with Santa, food and hot drinks from Plymouth Rotary's Chill Buster Barbecue, and a community bonfire. Several also paused to take family photos in front of the brightly lit bandstand and Christmas tree on the Town Common.

That wasn't the end, however. Celebrations continued the next day with Skating with Santa at the PSU ice arena and one final holiday concert by the Pemi Choral Society inside the university's Silver Center for the Arts.

Salmon Press
Martin Lord Osman
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Town of Barnsted
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