Chamber official says entry record set

Robert Smith

Pawhuska’s annual Christmas Parade, held Saturday along Kihekah Avenue and Main Street, set a record for total entries — 43.

That number beat the previous city Christmas parade entry record by 11, said Reba Bueno of the Chamber of Commerce. Entries, including floats, this year were to be themed based on the entrant’s favorite Christmas movie. Bueno said the big winner among the 2018 floats was the “Polar Express” float sponsored by the Black Gold Motel.

Pawhuska businessman Cody Garnett, who did parade announcing along with his wife, Lauren, was ecstatic when he heard about the new entry record.

“Oh, man, that’s awesome. I’m so happy about that,” Garnett said. “I’m already thinking about next year.”

Part of what Garnett said he has in mind for next year is to improve the visibility of floats and other parade entries by clearing the block where the Frontier Hotel and The Pioneer Woman Mercantile are located of motor vehicles the day before the parade and bringing in bleachers for spectators.

The 2018 parade, for which show business pro Larry Sellers was grand marshal, got started about 5:30 p.m. Saturday at the north end of Kihekah Avenue and moved south until it turned east onto Main Street. The weather was chilly because of wind, but the crowds came and children scrambled around the edges of the parade to collect candy that had been thrown for them.

Following the parade, the Constantine Theater on Main Street offered a free showing of the 1947 Christmas classic, “It Happened on Fifth Avenue.”

Bueno expressed optimism that the 2019 parade will surpass 2018 in the number of entries and excitement generated.