If you're looking for a great holiday parade for your family, come to Grosse Pointe for its 37th annual Santa Claus Parade! Santa returns the day after Thanksgiving – Friday, Nov. 23, 2012 – and all events are free for the whole family during this "Parade Day in the Village."
Things step off – literally – at 9 a.m. during the 15th annual Happy Holidays 5K Jingle Bell Walk/Run, presented by the Grosse Pointe Lions.
Then, at 10 a.m., it's time for the big shebang. "Ooo" and "ahh" over some 100-plus parade units, taking off from the corner of Lewiston Road and Kercheval Street and running west through the Hill and Village shopping districts – along with many more community members who participate in this holiday spectacle. A fresh highlight for the 2012 shebang? Keep eyes peeled for the all-new White Christmas Carriage, presented by the Friends of the Grosse Pointe Parade.
Wave to Santa as he rides his sleigh through the downtown streets, officially ushering in the Christmas season. Watch for the Grosse Pointe Wellness Express and Caboose, too, designed specially for the Toys for Tots program and accompanied by a U.S. Marine honor guard. It delivers toys to needy children.
But don't leave just yet! After doing a bit of holiday shopping and grabbing a bite in The Village, at 4:30 p.m., warm up to the sounds of a caroler concert, performed by Authentic Dickens Carolers at the corner of Kercheval and St. Clair streets. Then, at 5 p.m., the whole family can enjoy the lighting of the beautiful Village Aglow Tree – and everyone can participate in the giant group sing-along and free hot chocolate that follows.
Throughout the season, be sure to swing back to Grosse Pointe for "hometown holiday shopping" – and a chance to see Santa at Village Toy Company. He's here noon-4 p.m. Nov. 23-24 and Dec. 1-8, plus 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Dec. 15. Also, word to the wise: Surface-lot parking is free on Saturdays and Sundays from Thanksgiving till Christmas. Merry, indeed!
See the Metro Parent listing for more on the 2012 Parade Day in the Village and Santa Claus Parade in Grosse Pointe.