Due to Covid-19, Cape Charles has had to make changes for the Grand Illumination this year. This year the Shriners will be joining the lighted golf cart parade to bring even more viewing pleasure. The parade route will also change to give everyone ample space to spread out and enjoy their 6’ social distance from others.
At 4:00 p.m., the parade will line up at the corner of Washington Avenue and Fig Street and wind back towards the Oyster Farm. At 4:30 p.m. the Shriners will kick off the parade down Washington Avenue onto Bay Avenue doing their tricks and waving at the folks safely distanced on the sidewalks. The Lighted Golf Carts will follow the Shriners. Washington and Bay Avenues will be closed to traffic from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. to allow for the parade. The Shriners and Golf Cart participants are then welcome to ride down Mason Avenue, provided they stay in the proper lane as this street will not be closed.
After the main parade ends at the end of Bay Avenue, the Lighted Golf Carts will continue on making their way to Central Park. The Tidewater Concert Band will be playing Christmas music as the Lighted Golf Carts arrive to make their signature two laps for all to see. Following the laps, the golf cart participants can enjoy the music until 6:00 p.m. when the switch is flipped turning on all the amazing lights in Central Park. Instead of lighting candles, battery-operated candles will be provided to each person. These candles are yours to keep. The town has also decided to forego the cookies and hot chocolate this year in an effort to avoid large groupings. Santa will still make his grand entrance but will not be available for pictures.
For the safety of each participant, the town asks that you wear a mask for each event. Even though the event is outside we are entering flu season and COVID is so unpredictable Cape Charles prefers to err on the side of caution to ensure that each and every person can enjoy the Holiday Season with loved ones. Please remember to maintain six-feet of social distance.
The Shriners parade has been organized by Marie Brady from Bailey’s Bait and Tackle. The Shriners provide a number of services to children and all their work is made possible from donations. If anyone would like to make a contribution to the Shriners, please feel free to drop it off at Bailey’s Bait and Tackle before December 5.
The Lighted Golf Cart Parade was started by local resident Jenny Jackson with the help of Tammy Holloway. Make sure to thank these ladies if you see them. This has been a fun addition to the Grand Illumination.
Citizens for Central Park (CCP) started the Grand Illumination, and that effort was led by Nancy Vest for many years before the CCP turned the reins over to the Town of Cape Charles. CCP still supports this event and is very active in its planning.
The real heroes for this evening are the Town’s Public Works crew. John Lockwood, Rick Finley, DeJohn Stratton and Demetrius Spady work so hard every year repairing and putting up lights and to make sure we all have a great evening.
A huge thank you to each and every person for making the changes necessary to enjoy these events. Happy Holidays!