Monday, November 27, 2006

Santa Claus Parade

(OK, we're a week or so late...better late than never, right?)

Last weekend we went downtown for the 3rd Annual Santa Claus Parade. This was the first time we'd made it to the parade - Sunday morning isn't the most convenient time for us. This year they moved it to 1 pm, so we were able to get down in time to get a good spot.

We decided to add to the adventure by taking the West Coast Express. The train usually only runs on weekdays, but they run two special Christmas trains every year - one for the parade, and a second for a shopping day in early December. It was great. The ride was free if you brought an unwrapped toy, and Santa made a special appearance on the train!

We walked from Waterfront Station to the corner of Georgia and Howe - right where the parade turns - and found a prime spot right in front of the Art Gallery. We were there early enough to get a spot right on the street, so we could sit on the curb as the parade went by. The only downside - we did have to hang out for a couple of hours before the parade started. But the weather was great - only a few minutes of light sprinkling, then the sun came out - so it was fun to sit and watch all the entertainment. We did get a red nose and a pair of antlers just for fun.

Oh, and one other downside to being in the front: the woman who brought her daughter right down to the street and stood in front of us about 10 minutes before parade time. We thought they were just there to see something that was happening, but when they didn't move afterwards, we asked whether they planned to stay and they said yes! I felt awful having to say "sorry, but we've been here for two hours and we don't want someone standing in front of us", but I can't believe people are rude enough to put others in that situation in the first place. Put a bit of a damper on things, but oh well!

The parade was great, although by the time it started Amanda was pretty tired. Being in the front you get all the free stuff they are handing out - lots of candy canes, chocolate (even some from Purdy's!), and other miscellaneous stuff. Amanda also got her picture taken with Rudolph as he walked by!

After the parade we wandered back to the train, where they were even handing out eggnog at the station. All in all, a great day (although I'm not sure if we would have said so if it had been pouring rain!). We will definitely plan to make this an annual tradition.

No comments: