Winding it's way through downtown, this year's parade will be themed An Old Fashioned Christmas. For Downtown Development Authority Director Linda Bass, the celebration is a time for the community to remember old-fashioned values.
"We're a historic town and the Christmas parade has been a tradition for years and we'll just play up our historic past and maybe remember when times were simpler," Bass said.
Festivities will begin at 5 p.m. with carolers on Public Square. Downtown businesses will remain open late for visitors to shop and various organizations will provide free hot cocoa and refreshments. Guests downtown also may register for door prizes to be given away consisting of products and gift certificates from local shops and restaurants.
"It's a chance for people to come down that haven't been down before or haven't been down in a while to come visit the new businesses down here," said Alisha Cline, owner of Cline Photography. "People come out and Christmas shop together and it's a little mini reunion for people -- they look forward to it every year."
The parade will begin at 6 p.m. from Adairsville Middle School traveling east on King Street, turning south on Main Street and entering Public Square. On Public Square, the parade will travel against the typical flow of traffic heading south in the lane closest to storefronts. The parade will exit Public Square crossing the railroad tracks and turn north onto Railroad Street returning to the school.
"We encourage people to come onto the public square. A lot of people will line Main Street to watch the parade but we ask people to come on down to the square and visit businesses and get refreshments," Bass said.
Following the parade, awards will be given for best float and best decorated window for downtown businesses. Santa will be available for pictures at Cline Photography, 122 Public Square, after he finishes the parade route. Photo packages will be available starting at $15.
Cline is expecting a large crowd Saturday as she has seen increased success with recent downtown events. With new lights and decorations adorning downtown Adairsville, Cline hopes for a repeat of the turnout experienced at Halloween.
"[Downtown attendance] is getting better, people are getting more aware of the events that are going on. Last Halloween, we had maybe 50 kids come down and this Halloween we did free portraits out on the sidewalk and I shot over 400 images and there were a couple images per kid. So, we probably had 150 or 200 kids down here for Halloween -- so it is growing," Cline said.
Today is the last day for parade entry. Floats are $25, other vehicles are $15 and walking groups are free. Applications must be submitted to city hall, 116 Public Square, by the end of business at 6 p.m.
For more information on downtown festivities, call Linda Bass at 770-773-3281.