Downtown Santa Barbara (DSB) will kick off the holiday season with the 67th Annual Downtown Santa Barbara Holiday Parade, Presented by Consumer Fire Products Inc. at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6, lighting up State Street, and bringing the spirit of the holidays to some 65,000 spectators.
The parade starts at Sola Street and continues down State Street to Cota Street.
This year’s parade will feature giant balloons, marching bands, community floats, performance groups, the Holiday Prince and Fairy, and the most anticipated appearance of the season: Santa Claus.
This year’s theme, A Tropical Holiday, chosen to show off the sunny, laid-back attitude of Santa Barbara, offers a world of ways to decorate, illuminate and celebrate the community.
Consumer Fire Products Inc. returns as the parade’s presenting sponsor, with Downtown Santa Barbara again producing the 75-plus entry, nighttime parade.
“We at Consumer Fire Products Inc. are thrilled to be the presenting sponsor of the Downtown Santa Barbara Holiday Parade and honored to continue our tradition of donating the Community Christmas Tree to light up the holiday season for the sixth year in a row,” said Irene Rhodes, owner and CEO of CFPI.
“It’s an exciting time of year, and we’re grateful for the chance to support the community in such a joyous event,” she said.
The Holiday Prince & Fairy, sponsored by Paseo Nuevo Shops & Restaurants, will lead the parade down State Street, fulfilling the important task of lighting the Community Christmas Tree.
“Paseo Nuevo is undergoing a significant renovation for a new and improved center and at our core is our commitment to the community to create a thriving downtown,” said Mary Lynn Harms, senior marketing director.
“We are proud to support Downtown Santa Barbara’s 67th Annual Holiday Parade and to sponsor the Prince & Fairy Art Contest again this year,” she said. “This beloved tradition is a vital part of the holiday season celebrated in our community.
“We have again partnered with our anchor, Nordstrom, who will style the winners in new outfits for their Holiday Parade debut. Paseo Nuevo and Nordstrom’s commitment to downtown, has never been stronger.”
Young artists (ages 6-10) are invited to submit a drawing depicting the Tropical Holiday parade theme, using any sheet of paper no larger than 11- by-17 inches. For more info on the Prince & Fairy art contest or to enter a drawing, visit https://www.downtownsb.org/events/downtown-holiday-parade.
“With this delightful theme, we want lots of imagination on display,” said Kate Schwab, marketing and communications director for Downtown SB. “We’re looking forward to tropical creativity in music, costumes, lighting and design.”
In keeping with traditions of the past, Santa still reigns over the celebration. He’ll make his appearance at the end of the parade in a huge float for the grand finale. His custom-built float, in partnership with the Santa Barbara Summer Solstice Celebration, is sponsored by Marborg Industries.
The public can join Santa before the parade as he greets families in Paseo Nuevo Center Court for Photos with Santa, 4-5 p.m.
Other Holiday Parade sponsors include: American Riviera Bank, Bright Event Rentals, Hotel Californian, Kimpton Canary Hotel, Montecito Bank & Trust, Pacific Coast Business Times, Santa Barbara Independent, Santa Barbara International Film Festival, State Street Nationals, The Towbes Group, Town & Country Event Rentals, VOICE Magazine and Zoom.
For more information about volunteering for the Holiday Parade, or participation in the Prince & Fairy contest, contact April Lee, Holiday Parade co-producer, at April@DowntownSB.org.
— Kate Schwab for Downtown Santa Barbara.