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UPDATE: RH Christmas Parade Saturday pushed back to 1 p.m. start due to expected rain
Richmond Hill chili cook-off and parade this weekend; Pembroke's parade and market Dec. 8.
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A young Grinch at Richmond Hill's 2017 Christmas Parade. File photo by Mark Swendra.

Got that Christmas spirit yet?

If not, there are a number of local events on tap to get your holiday mood in gear, starting Friday night with Richmond Hill’s 17th annual Chili Cook Off at J.F. Gregory Park. The event is from 6 to 8 p.m.

Richmond Hill’s 23rd annual Christmas parade gets under way Saturday aftertnoon. This year’s grand marshal is longtime Richmond Hill resident Gordon Holland.

Holland, a World War II Navy veteran who served aboard minesweepers, is a Tattnall County native. He worked for nearly 40 years at Union Bag, which became Union Camp, and moved with his family to Richmond Hill in 1956, according to Mayor Russ Carpenter, who lauded Holland for his community service.

Holland played softball and volunteered at Richmond Hill Recreation Department, attended church at Richmond Hill Methodist where he was a “devoted Sunday school member, usher and greeter and annual barbecue volunteer.”

Holland also served as a volunteer with the Richmond Hill Fire Department as a certified EMT, was a member of the Jaycees. He is locally famous for his oranges, tangerines and blueberries.

 The parade begins at 1 p.m.  It was originally scheduled to start at 10, but weather forecasts call for rain earlier in the morning. The portion of Ford Avenue on the parade route will be closed to thru traffic beginning at noon. until approximately 3:30 P.M. You can check out the city’s Facebook page for the latest.

RH Christmas parade map 2018

Immediately afterward, The Festival of Trees at Station Exchange Senior Care, 3205 TSX Grand Central..

The public can enjoy viewing a variety of trees sponsored by community businesses and organizations. There will be entertainment and food available while enjoying the sights and sounds of the holiday season.

The Fraternal Order of Eagles #330, will be selling concessions, with all proceeds donated to a local charity

For those wishing to sponsor, all trees must be set up and decorated between Nov. 26 and Nov. 30. Power will be available for lights on a limited basis. Trees should have a theme and be able to withstand the outdoor weather. Trees will be judged the day of the event for Most Attractive, Most Creative, and Most Oriented to the Theme.

Businesses can set up a booth to sell their products or hand out flyers.

Singers, dancers, and storytellers are invited to participate in offering their talents. Performances will be scheduled for no longer than 30 minutes each. Background sound and PA system will be provided.

For more information, call Station Exchange at 912-445-2425 or 803-728-7794.

  Pembroke’s festivities are Dec. 8. The event begins at 2 p.m. with the city’s Christmas Market, and the 31st Annual Christmas Parade starts at 5:30 p.m.

The city is taking a different approach with its grand marshal this year, according to Downtown Development Authority Director Renee Hernandez.

Pembroke is looking to its history for its parade.

 “If there is one thing we know it's that history is important to Pembroke! And, while the Downtown Development Authority is focused on growth, we are always looking for ways to preserve and promote our history. With that placemaking and ‘placekeeping’ mindset, the DDA of Pembroke has created a mascot centered around Pembroke's very first citizen - M.E. Carter,” Hernandez said in an email. “Carter was a section master for the portion of railroad that came through Pembroke. In fact, his first residence and office was in a railcar that had been switched off the line for his use. To introduce our mascot to the community, Carter the Conductor is the Grand Marshal for the 2018 Pembroke Christmas parade! The parade is just the first appearance of Carter, as he will be present at city events, ribbon cuttings, and the like. We feel that this mascot is a great way to keep the history of Pembroke alive so that, no matter how much we grow, we always remember how our charming town got its start!”

You can check out the DDA of Pembroke’s Facebook page for more information.

In addition, in a local tradition, various fire departments will be holding events and conducting “Santa Runs” through neighborhoods in December.



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