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Enumclaw filled with holiday celebrations Saturday

By Kevin Hanson, The Courier-Herald

Downtown Enumclaw will come alive Saturday evening, when Cole Street is given over to the annual holiday parade.

Sponsored by the Enumclaw Downtown Partnership, the event typically includes plenty of entries from local businesses and civic groups. In keeping with tradition, most bear strands of holiday lights. This year's event, carrying the theme "A Good Old Country Christmas," begins at 6 p.m. and will travel Cole Street between Washington and Monroe avenues.

There will be several new features for this year's parade, according to Genna Nashem, EDP executive director. Among those will be several "warming stations," consisting of large, propane-fueled heaters, large enough for a small group to huddle around. Provided by Puget Sound Energy, the stations also will have volunteers passing out free hot chocolate.

A special entry in this year's parade will be a Masonic Lodge float that travels the nation. The float, which has appeared in the huge Rose Parade, was secured by a local member of the lodge. It will join such entries as representatives of a local Jeep club, equestrian units, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, an entry by Stage Door Productions, plenty of fire trucks and, of course, Santa Claus.

Also new this year will be bleachers at each of the intersections along the parade route, except Cole and Griffin. Providing seating for spectators, the bleachers will be brought from Enumclaw parks by city crews.

The parade is just part of a full weekend of activity by the Downtown Partnership. Things will get rolling Friday night, when merchants participate in a downtown "open house," keeping their doors open later than usual to accommodate shoppers. Some will also be open for business on Sunday.

For the kids, the EDP is reviving the tradition of bringing truckloads of snow to a downtown parking lot. Nashem said the weather has cooperated, so trucks will be heading to Crystal Mountain early Saturday morning for their loads of snow. The snow will be piled up in the lot at Cole Street and Initial Avenue.

Kevin Hanson can be reached at khanson@courierherald.com

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