On Monday night we wrapped up warm and headed into town to watch the Winchester Christmas Parade. One of the great advantages of living in a much smaller city is you can turn up to something like a big parade ten minutes before kick off, and still find a great place from which to view the action.
We weren’t quite sure what to expect – after watching the spectacle that is the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade I had to lower the girl’s expectations somewhat.
One of the key parts of the parade were the marching bands from the city and county Middle and High schools. The marching band is not something that’s done in New Zealand schools so it was a great new experience for us. I for one loved seeing rows and rows of children and young adults streaming past, all in command of their instruments. There was a real sense of pride and spirit.
Although we have only been here just short of two months, Olive and Edie have already developed a fierce pride for their future schools – Daniel Morgan Middle School and John Handley High School. Whenever we drive past the schools, especially the high school, there is always pointing and commenting. They were very excited recently to go and watch a show at the high school and when they meet someone new they always want to know where they go to school. If its DMMS or JHHS then they are ok 🙂 It seems that if Olive and Edie have their way, we will be living here for the next fourteen years!!
Along with the marching bands there were scout groups, volunteer fire brigades, the Winchester City pipe band, 4H clubs, church groups, beauty queens…even a BMX club.
Of course no Christmas Parade would be complete without that jolly big guy in the red suit…
The parade was a real reflection of the community and what is important to it, and we loved every minute of it. And it was just the start of a whole host of activities, concerts, house tours, Nativity plays etc. etc. that one can partake of in Winchester as we get close to Christmas. I forsee a great deal of photography and typing in my near future!
PS Richard has just come home from his run and reports that the light displays are growing exponentially around the neighbourhood. He has promised to go out one night and get some photos – I will endeavour to hold him to that 🙂