By Mary O’KEEFE
On Saturday the 37th Annual Montrose Glendale Christmas Parade will begin at 6 p.m. but due to the popularity of the parade, rain or shine, parade audience members are advised to arrive early.
There are about 140 entries in the parade that include local officials along with organizations like Boy and Girl Scout troops.
The weather is predicted to be cold with rain in the morning that tapers off in the afternoon.
“It is a fast moving system,” said Bonnie Bartlett of the National Weather Service, Oxnard. The rain is supposed to begin in the early morning hours on Friday.
“It is [expected] to hit the central coast at midnight,” she added.
There will continue to be a chance of rain through Saturday afternoon. Temperatures are expected to be in the 50s during the day and lows in the 40s, so it is advised to bundle up to enjoy the parade. To help with that, there will be plenty of restaurants offering warm soup and hot cocoa along Honolulu.
This year the grand marshal for the parade is Montrose Centennial, which will be represented by those in the community who have made a significant impact to the area. Those dignitaries include Wanda Bergstrom who, for over 40 years, has been the waitress at the City Hall Café. Also recognized will be Ron Gelsinger, local business owner, community supporter and owner of Gelsinger Meats and Zeke’s Smokehouse; Vito Cannella, a longtime barber and former postmaster of Montrose who is known for being the force behind Flag Week; Joe Kroening, who was recently presented with the Don Carpenter Award from the CV Chamber of Commerce and is a community supporter and owner of Andy’s Transfer and Storage; Bill Dodson who tended the Vietnam Veteran Memorial for decades; and Paul Roberts, son of Frank Roberts who was known as Mr. Montrose.
The junior grand marshals will be the Prom Plus Club from Crescenta Valley High School.
The Montrose Glendale Christmas Parade is a real hometown parade. It celebrates what makes the community special with tons of kids, lots of organizations, local heroes and great bands including CVHS marching band that just completed marching in the Hollywood Christmas Parade.
The parade begins with the traditional Santa helicopter flyover and ends with Santa riding along Honolulu Avenue in a Glendale fire engine.
Rick Dinger and Jane Kane will be announcing the entries as they make their way down Honolulu Avenue. For those who are too far east to hear them, Leila and Vince Bell will be situated at the east end near Verdugo Road to let attendees know who are coming down the avenue.
For those who cannot make the parade, viewers can watch it streaming live at www.ICFN.TV and www.MontroseChristmasParade.com or on Charter Cable 382 beginning at 6 p.m. The International Christian Family Network is filming the parade.
To become a sponsor for the parade next year, visit www.montrosechristmasparade.com. The parade hotline is available, too, at (818) 528-6060. The Christmas Parade Association is no longer accepting any new entries for participation in the parade, but will gladly accept financial donations.