Parade at night? Let there be light!

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Christmas season calls for parades. Night parades call for lights. HomeTown HoliDazzle in Wilmington, Ohio combines all of this and more! 

Fancy Free Cloggers once again snagged a spot in the parade lineup. This event is perfect to get FFC in the mood for our upcoming performances in the Murphy Theatre's Cartoon Christmas!

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Wilmington makes a whole day of the HomeTown HoliDazzle event; craft activities, musical performances, visits with Santa, games, and a train ride are all part of the fun. Come nighttime, the parade is THE big event.

HomeTown HoliDazzle doesn't mess around. Here's the first rule of the parade:

1.  This is an illuminated parade. ALL entries must be well lit.

A couple glow-in-the-dark necklaces ain't gonna cut it, y'all!

I added this lighted hat to my wardrobe. It works great and coordinates with the gloves I bought for last year's parade! FYI - the hat has 3 modes, with all of them flashing in some way. There is no static mode. The battery can be replaced. Lights are located only on the front of the hat.

The lighted floats were spectacular! One float included a hot air balloon basket shooting tall flames into the air. The cloggers should totally add pyrotechnics next year...

The Falconettes (local high school drill team) added flair to the lineup, all decked out with light-up scarves, headbands, and pom-poms. I look forward to seeing them perform in Murphy Theatre's Cartoon Christmas show next week! 

Aerials acrobatics team warmed up their impressive stunts in the parade holding area. It takes skill to do that while moving down the street.

However, I think I speak for all of FFC when declaring the local Star Wars club to be our favorite fellow walking group in the HomeTown HoliDazzle parade!

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Luke Skywalker (aka Brian) helped FFC with fight choreography in our Star Wars clogging routine. That dance has created many cool opportunities for us.

Fancy Free Cloggers once again utilized the classic "Highway 40 Blues" choreography to move through the parade. It's easy enough for cloggers of all skill levels to maintain a clean sound and allows experienced dancers to throw in showy step variations.

If your team is in search of Christmas parade music, FFC was pleased with these finds, available on iTunes:

"Frosty the Snowman" from the album Bluegrass Christmas by Craig Duncan

"Sleigh Ride" from the album Pickin' on Christmas: Country Bluegrass Renditions of Holiday Favorites by Nashville Superpickers

 Both are instrumental and follow straight through with regular 8-count sections (no 4-beaters randomly thrown in). I slowed both songs slightly for the parade to make it easier for everyone to maneuver around uneven spots in the street while still keeping the beat.

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As usual, teammate Sabrena showed us all up with her creativity! In addition to wearing lights pinned perfectly to the seams of her pant legs, she carried an umbrella strung with Christmas lights. The visual effect of Sabrena clogging inside a curtain of light was perfect for the parade. She used her same trick from last year to secure the battery packs, constructing a bag from pockets of old jeans and hanging it on the center of the umbrella. Two of the same denim bags held battery packs for lights decorating our team banner.

THANK YOU to the organizers of HomeTown HoliDazzle for putting on this fun event! Great job!

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THANK YOU to teammate Randi for providing transportation back to our vehicles after the parade. All I need now is a mug of hot cocoa!

Do YOU participate in any lighted parades?