GOOD HOPE, Ala. – A big crowd came out Saturday afternoon for the Good Hope Christmas Parade and Christmas in the Park. The parade began at Good Hope High School and traveled to the city’s municipal park where the community was treated to homemade chili and hot dogs, train rides, crafts and pictures with Santa.
James Calvert served as this year’s grand marshal and rode in a beautiful horse-drawn carriage.
“For an old man, I guess something is supposed to happen to him in his old age, you know?” smiled Calvert.
Calvert said he felt honored to be asked and enjoyed the afternoon visiting with members of the community.
Several groups participated in the parade, including the Good Hope Sizzlin’ Seniors, Girl Scouts, the Good Hope High football team and the Hanceville and Good Hope marching Bands.
In a touching tribute to the late Good Hope City Councilman Johnny Harris, who portrayed Santa Claus in Good Hope and throughout the Cullman area for many years, the float that would normally carry Harris was placed at the parade’s end. It still produced snow and was beautifully decorated with his empty chair alongside his photo.
Fire departments from Good Hope, Trimble, Hanceville, Dodge City, Bethsadia, Loretto and Vinemont-Providence also participated in the parade.
At the park, those in the parade and the community enjoyed a free chili and hot dog lunch from the City of Good Hope. Mayor Jerry Bartlett and members of the city council each prepared their favorite chili recipes. Students from Good Hope helped serve the lunch.
A train provided rides around the park and other stations were set up for families to make Christmas ornaments, decorate cookies and write letters to Santa. Many families stopped to visit with Santa.
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