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Wesson Volunteer Fire Department up first in town’s parade

The 45th annual Wesson Christmas parade is set to roll this afternoon and for the first time, the Wesson Volunteer Fire Department is asking for an entry fee.

While the fee is just a suggestion, Chief Ken Carraway is hopeful that all those who participate will donate the fee — an unwrapped toy for a child — to help the fire department make Christmas a little brighter for a Wesson family.

“We’ve never had an entry fee required,” he said. “A toy donation would be appreciated.”

Firefighters at Wesson plan to adopt a family for the holidays and the donated toys will help out, he said. Those they can’t use for the family will be donated to other organizations that distribute toys to children in the area, he said.

The parade will begin at 4 p.m., with groups lining up at the old Sunflower Grocery building at 3:30 p.m.

Following tradition, police and fire officials from Wesson and neighboring departments will mark the start of the parade up and down Hwy. 51.

The Wesson High School band and the Copiah-Lincoln Community College Blue Wave Show Band will march through downtown Wesson, playing Christmas tunes for the crowd. Other entries include civic organization beaus and beauties from area pageants. Santa Claus will round out the parade on the last float of the night, bringing holiday cheer to the crowd. All of the floats’ riders will be tossing candy to the crowds. The parade circles around at Decell Memorial United Methodist Church and heads back to the start.

Friends of the Library will help make the celebration an evening-long affair by providing entertainment following the parade, Carraway said.

In addition to Christmas carols, the Friends of the Library will be playing a Christmas movie and hosting pictures with “The Grinch.” There will also be horse and buggy rides, refreshments and face painting. All of the activities will take place at the Wesson Library Pavilion and Garden from 5 to 6:30 p.m.

The lighting of the town’s Christmas tree will take place in the municipal park at Saturday at 4:30 p.m. Hot cocoa and cookies will be served and the public is invited to join in to sing carols around the tree.