Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Holiday Lane Parade

Pomona groups working to bring back Christmas parade
Monica Rodriguez, Staff Writer
Posted: 03/24/2009 04:36:06 PM PDT

POMONA - Efforts are under way to ensure the annual Christmas parade not only takes place this year but comes back with a fresh look after last year's absence.
Various groups are working together to put on a parade that could include a new name, a new route through downtown and possibly a connection to the annual Holiday Lane celebration, said Carolyn Hemming, president of the Downtown Pomona Owners Association.

The Jaycees, who for decades have been involved with the parade, will continue to spearhead the parade organizing effort, said Hemming, who is part of a parade steering committee that includes participation of various business groups and business people.

"They have a lot of great input and they are chairing the committee," Hemming said. "Their wisdom is absolutely needed."

Representatives of the Pomona Jaycees could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

Jaycees members canceled the 2008 edition of the parade after learning city funds that helped cover some of the costs of the event were no longer available.

Since then, various organizations, including the Downtown Pomona Owners Association, have been working to ensure the parade returns this year.

Among the changes being considered is moving the parade route so it travels along Second or Third streets. The original path of the parade in the 1940s included going through downtown.

Other possible changes include moving the city's annual Holiday Lane celebration from Huntington Street to the Civic Center Plaza where the parade would end, Hemming said.
Another idea is to have the parade move to the second Saturday of December instead of the first Saturday.

"In the morning you would have the parade, Holiday Lane in the afternoon and Second Saturday at night," Hemming said.

Various details must still be worked out including whether a date change would present scheduling problems for participation by marching bands, she said.

The final event plan will probably require City Council approval, Hemming said.

At this point the city is in discussions with the owners' association and the Jaycees, said Mark Gluba, assistant to the city manager.

If city financial backing is needed then the matter could go to the council as part of the 2009-2010 budget process, he said.

Fairplex, which has experience putting on parades as part of the Los Angeles County Fair festivities, is among the organizations that have shown interest in helping grow the parade.

"We really want to see the event stay alive and maybe even make it stronger," said Scott Kelly, director of community and government relations for Fairplex.

With Fairplex's own knowledge of parades and some volunteers the organization will be able to contribute to the event, he said.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heck ya, bring back the parade!

March 25, 2009 at 2:19 PM  
Blogger Skrip said...

I've heard about it every year, and I also heard about it when they cancelled it. If the route changes thru downtown, that would be cool!

March 25, 2009 at 5:59 PM  

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