PARADE: Christmas to come to downtown Col. City tonight

COLUMBIA CITY — With reindeer, lights and the sounds of Christmas, Santa will be ushered to his house on the Courthouse Square Friday night.The City of Columbia City and the Downtown Business Association, along with The Clugston on the Square, will present a lighted Christmas parade Friday at 6 p.m.This is the first parade of its kind in Columbia City in recent memory.Once Santa reaches the Courthouse, a holiday lighting ceremony will initiate the holiday season as Santa begins entertaining children.Santa’s house is a long-standing tradition. Lori Shipman is the Downtown Business Association president and said the association is looking forward to the weekend.“Guestbooks from the visitors to Santa’s house show that people from all over Northeast Indiana come to Columbia City,” said Shipman. “This is a neat tradition.”This Saturday also marks National Small Business Saturday and Shipman has been gearing up downtown business for the weekend. “This weekend just encapsulates the small town idea,” Shipman said. “People come close to home in an intimate venue to see Santa, shop local business and take in the warmth of our small town.”Children visiting Santa can have their picture taken and receive a candy cane for free, thanks to the Downtown Business Association.Shipman said, “If this isn’t part of your family’s holiday tradition, it ought to be.”The Whitley County Historical Society will have a holiday history booth to offer participants a chance in helping string popcorn garlands for the trees around the Courthouse.Angie Craig, assistant director of the historical museum said this is another way for the historical society to add to the ambiance of Columbia City.“It’s nice to be involved in this community activity. Since this is new event, it is good to see that this gets started out on the right foot,” said Craig.Part of the night’s festivities will be The Walk of Trees held at The Clugston on the Square until 8 p.m. The Clugston Senior Apartments, 108 S. Chauncey St., Columbia City will celebrate the holiday season with the Third Annual Walk of Trees. For a more in depth look at this story, see the Nov. 22 issue of The Post and Mail. Don't have a subscription? Call (260) 244-5153 or subscribe to our e-edition. For breaking news, sports updates and additional coverage, bookmark the homepage and find us on facebook.