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2021 Sparks Hometowne Christmas Parade

A community celebration of the Christmas Holiday Season in Downtown Victorian Square

SPARKS, Nev. (Nov. 23, 2021) – The City of Sparks’ Hometowne Christmas parade weekend starts Friday, Dec. 3 with the annual tree lighting ceremony and culminates with the Hometowne Christmas Parade Saturday, Dec. 4.

The annual tree lighting ceremony is Friday, Dec. 3 from 6:30 p.m. – 7 p.m. next to the large gazebo on the corner of Victorian Avenue and Victorian Plaza Circle. The ceremony includes music from the Reed High School Jazz Band, led by Director Ron Eichstedt. Mayor Ed Lawson will flip the switch to light the city’s permanent living Christmas tree, a 60 foot blue spruce.

As part of the tree lighting, the Sparks Rotary Club will be randomly selecting the winning tickets for the organization’s Mad Money Raffle, with a grand prize of $10,000 including a $1,000 first place cash prize. Tickets are sold by the Rotarians for $100. To purchase tickets or for more information, email info@sparksrotary.org. The proceeds of the raffle benefit the Kids Free Fishing Day, Sparks Police Explorers, youth rotary programs and Diedrichsen and Lincoln Park Elementary Schools.

The annual parade is a festive tradition that kicks off the holiday season with marching bands, costumes, animals, floats and more. The parade route travels from east to west on Victorian Avenue from Pyramid Way to 16th Street and begins Dec. 4 at 1 p.m. The parade’s theme is the Art of Christmas designed to celebrate the newly installed artwork in downtown. The Santa Float is sponsored by Rail City Casino and is provided by Generator, a local makers space that encourages artist to create without boundaries. The Generator is also providing a ride for the City Council on a Burning Man Art car, titled Surley Bird.

In addition to the city sponsored events, 39 North, an organization comprised of local businesses with the desire to revitalize Sparks, is hosting its annual 39 North Pole on the same weekend in the downtown area. The event takes place at Victorian Plaza, the tree-lined area in front of the Galaxy Theatre to Victorian Avenue.  The event brings together food trucks, entertainment and holiday light displays along with an outdoor craft fair in a heated vendor tent.

The 2021 Parade Grand Marshals are Ms. Noelle Rader, Orchestra Teacher at Mendive Middle School and Victoria Wellman-Hornback, Visual Arts Instructor at Sparks Middle School. “As we celebrate the ART of Christmas, we’d like to recognize these incredible Sparks teachers who symbolize this work by teaching, mentoring and encouraging their students in art and music,” said Francine Burge, special event supervisor for the City of Sparks. The educators will be driven in the parade in cars provided by Hot August Nights.

The Sparks Hometowne Christmas has been nominated in USA Today’s 2021 10Best Readers’ Choice travel awards. The contest, which is being promoted by USA TODAY, gives voters four weeks to vote for the candidate of their choice at https://www.10best.com/awards/travel/best-holiday-parade-2021/ People can vote once a day through Monday, Dec. 6.  Winners are announced Dec. 17.

The Mayor’s Own Marching Band will walk in the parade showcasing the musical talents of Sparks middle school and high school students as one single, large marching band. The band is comprised of more than 200 students from Sparks Middle School, Shaw Middle School, Sparks High School and Spanish Springs High School.

To help audience members requiring assistance, wheelchair seating area is provided along the parade route in front of the Nugget Event Center, between 10th and 11th Streets.

Santa is available to his fans for photos at 39 North Pole event venue, located at Victorian Plaza. Participants can check “naughty or nice” status from 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. and after the parade from 2:30 – 3:30 p.m. Santa will visit with children and pose for commemorative photos for donation to the Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows. Boys & Girls Club members will serve as Santa’s helpers.

Our radio partners, Cumulus Communications, Lotus Radio, KWNK, and Reno Radio Group, keep the parade moving with announcing and review stands along the route with the play by play of the participants. The Entravision booth located at Sparks Christmas tree, located at gazebo close to 11th Street, will provide Spanish translation.

The event could not happen without the volunteers. The parade is laid-out and staged by the volunteers of Hot August Nights. The Boys and Girls Club provides the volunteers that take photos with Santa. Living Stones Church provide volunteers for the parade announcers, assists with set up and tear down, coordinates the parade off loading and provides hospitality at the parade and the tree lighting ceremony.

Schedule of Events

THURSDAY, DEC. 2

  • 39 North Pole, 4 to 9 p.m.: Light Displays, entertainment, and outdoor bazaar

FRIDAY, DEC. 3

  • Tree Lighting Ceremony, 6:30 to 7 p.m.
    • Complimentary hot chocolate from Living Stones Church
    • Music by Reed High School Jazz Band, led by Director Ron Eichstedt
  • 39 North Pole, 4 to 9 p.m.

SATURDAY, DEC. 4

  • Parade Day Activities: 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
    • Santa Photos at 39 North, presented by Boys and Girls Club of Truckee Meadows, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 to 3:30 p.m.
    • Sparks Hometowne Christmas Parade, 1 to 2:30 p.m.
  • 39 North Pole, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Sponsors

Presenting sponsors:

  • Nugget Casino Resort
  • Rail City Casino
  • Silverwing Development

Special Help

  • Hot August Nights
  • Living Stones Church
  • Boys and Girls Club of Truckee Meadows
  • Sparks Christian Fellowship

Media Partners:

  • Cumulus Communications
  • Entravision Communications
  • Lotus Radio
  • Reno Radio Group
  • KWNK

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