Some­thing spe­cial for pa­rade’s 75th birth­day

Central Leader - - News -

From P1

“It’s huge and we’ve just fin­ished all the sets so that’s a re­lief.”

The pa­rade has some spe­cial things in store to cel­e­brate its 75th birth­day, in­clud­ing a float fea­tur­ing the 12 days of Christ­mas, some huge bal­loons and a Dr Seuss’ Cat in the Hat set.

“We’re go­ing to have a good birth­day year.”

It takes more than 4000 peo­ple to bring the show to­gether, in­clud­ing per­form­ers, dancers, mar­shals, make-up artists, ban­ner car­ri­ers and cos­tume min­ders.

For Ms Thomp­son and Ms Meyrick, pa­rade-day on Sun­day will be a long day, start­ing at the cos­tume room at 5.30am and not end­ing un­til at least 7.30pm.

And af­ter the crowds have gone there is three weeks of wash­ing to be done.

Ms Meyrick says they have be­friended many fam­i­lies who vol­un­teer each year.

“It’s a real fam­ily thing. It’s nice be­cause we see them from when they’re seven and watch them grow up.”

“We’ve had fam­i­lies where three gen­er­a­tions are in­volved and one lady who had been do­ing it for 40 or 50 years,” Ms Thomp­son says.

Her own fam­ily is no ex­cep­tion. Her daugh­ter Me­gan Mid­dle­ton is dress­ing up for the pa­rade for the fifth time this year, along with her own daugh­ter Asia.

The Farm­ers Santa Pa­rade is on Sun­day and starts at 2pm. For in­for­ma­tion go to www.santaparade.co.nz.

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