Santa Parade: festive joy comes to Hamilton
Hundreds of families had lined the streets yesterday eagerly awaiting the Santa Parade.
When wet weather threatened to halt the annual event, at 4pm, as if on cue, the sky cleared to reveal a picture-perfect rainbow over Hamilton.
Santa Claus would indeed be coming to town.
Paraders gathered in full regalia and Gombeys hurried to get their masks on for a photograph.
Glow sticks, light sabres and luminescent shoelaces — it was an evening of miracles as Front Street experienced its first snowfall.
In Motion School of Dance pumped out the fake flakes on to their duelling army of nutcrackers and mice.
“We took a leap of faith,” owner and director Lizz Pimentel said after the torrential rain had stopped.
“They're all here. The Rat King, Clara, the SugarPlum Fairy, all the principal dancers — it's a little bit of everything to give everyone a taste of what's to come.”
Mother of two Daina Casling said: “It kicks off the season. We're now treating our spot on Par-la-Ville like May 24.
“We came two hours early to secure it.”
Ms Casling said: “The kids were very concerned the rain might upset that tradition. We're so happy it went ahead.”
Butterfield & Vallis carried a green message this year, a neon “Reduce Reuse Recycle” emblazoned across their chests.
The float used recycled palettes for the siding and green, plastic bottles were stacked in the shape of a fir tree.
“We drank a lot of Highland Spring in order to make the tree,” advertising manager Terri Durrant told The Royal Gazette.
Made entirely of recycled materials, the team used drained batteries and discarded bottle tops to make up the familiar features of a snowman.
Brittany Ricca said: “I've dressed up as Tinkerbell, a Mexican dancer.”
“I've done it all,” she said.
“And now you're trash,” a fellow floater teased.
Ms Ricca's father is the assistant manager and she has been involved in the parade since she was a child.
Bermuda Karting Club had its reindeer travel by race car instead of the traditional sleigh and BGA Wholesale Distributors created “a one in a minion Christmas”.
Dressed as the popular, yellow Pixar characters, they had countless sacks of candy canes to give to the crowd.
Alexandra Lima, dance teacher at Danceations, called it the highlight of their year. “We're so proud of them,” she said.
“All we want is for them to do well and have fun — to enjoy themselves and be kids still.”
New Parents Marc and Sandra Boden brought their 8-month-old daughter, Chrislyn.
“We brought her last year in the belly,” he said.
He said it was important to them to share these experiences.
“We want to take her to everything.
“It's a very special Christmas for us.”