It was cool, not cold, for Tucumcari’s annual Parade of Lights Saturday evening, so people on the streets heard Santa’s “Merry Christmas” all along the parade route. In a colder year, people tend to watch the parade as a drive-in event — from their cars.
As usual, Santa occupied the basket of a ladder truck provided by the Tucumcari Fire Department as he led the way for a procession of semi-drawn flatbeds decorated with bright lights and waving people, and festively lit-up recreational vehicles.
The parade came to rest in front of the Tucumcari Train Depot, which then hosted hundreds of visitors who socialized and enjoyed cookies, hot chocolate and other hot drinks, or waited in lines extending the length of the depot’s main waiting room so kids could visit with Santa.
The parade and the reception were sponsored by the Tucumcari Chamber of Commerce. The Altrusa Club donated treat bags containing candies and other goodies to kids waiting for Santa. Dr. Dan C Trigg Memorial Hospital donated cookies and hot drinks.
The floats competed for honors. The winners, according to Patsey Gresham, the chamber’s executive director:
First — Jack’s Truck Stop.
Second — Mesalands Community College.
Third — Pacheco Construction.
First — U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Second — Eastern Plains Head Start
The Chamber of Commerce also announced winners in its annual home lighting competition. They were:
First — Felmon Chavez, 224 S. Choctaw St.
Second — Dody Nunez, 6377 Cedar
Third — The Sappingtons, 1705 S. Fifth St.