More than 4,000 people are expected to walk, ride, dance or baton-twirl their way through downtown Hemet today for the city’s annual Christmas Parade, which concludes with a “Christmas in the Park” celebration.
The parade is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. near the intersection of Florida and Palm avenues. It will continue for six blocks, concluding at Florida and Kirby streets, according to organizers.
This year’s event celebrates the 90th anniversary of “Ramona,” touted as the nation’s longest-running outdoor theatrical production.
The play tells the story of Mexican colonial life in Southern California after the end of the Mexican-American War.
Dozens of people who have taken part in the annual production will walk or ride horseback in the parade. Some “Ramona” participants will go on to represent the city at the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena on Jan. 1.
Middle and high school marching bands from Hemet and San Jacinto will be in today’s event, along with students from the Acacia Middle School Science Club, who will be driving customized pedal cars.
There will be dance troupes, churches and businesses represented, organizers said.
Around 15,000 spectators are expected.
The parade will conclude at Gibbel Park, where Santa Claus and his helpers will greet visitors, and an array of children’s activities are planned.