A heaping helping of Christmas cheer was served up by Masterton’s Christmas Parade on Saturday.
There had been nervousness that the annual event might be a washout, with the weather looking uncertain in the run-up, but on the day the rain stayed away, and the crowds flocked out to enjoy the sunshine and festive sights.
The parade, which ran from 12.30-1.30pm and featured a record 35 floats, attracted several thousand people along the Queen St route, where they lined both sides of the road and were two to three deep in places.
Once the procession ended at the Farriers Bar and Eatery car park, hundreds of the attendees then streamed across the street to Queen Elizabeth Park for the Christmas in the Park event, where there were plenty of food trucks on hand and activities for all ages.
“We knew it had the potential to be the best ever Christmas parade if the weather held, and it was,” Masterton Mayor Gary Caffell said.
“There was a huge crowd, a record number of floats, and a great atmosphere.
“Christmas in the Park was much the same – lots of positive vibes.”
The parade had been diverted to Dixon St for its past two instalments in 2020 and 2022, and Caffell judged its return to its traditional Queen St route as “a big success – for businesses too”, many of which were open and appeared to be doing a roaring trade.
In fact, Caffell is so chuffed with how things went that he’s already looking forward to next year’s parade, “which we’re aiming to ensure is even bigger and brighter”.