The Gladewater Chamber of Commerce has canceled the Dec. 8 Christmas Parade, at the suggestion of Mayor JD Shipp, because of COVID-19 concerns.
“I have either been made aware or seen notifications of neighboring communities canceling their Christmas parades,” said Mayor Shipp.
Chamber directors were polled Sunday night decided to go along with Mayor Shipp’s suggestion and cancel the 2020 Christmas Parade.
“Unfortunately, this event is scheduled to occur during a period in time that we are experiencing an upswing in COVID cases. I worry that by allowing this event to continue as planned that we will be counterproductive to the efforts of our school in the continuation of on-site instruction,” Shipp said. “I also worry that we will put in to jeopardy families’ ability to gather for Christmas. The parade, while a wonderful holiday tradition, is an event that can be revisited next year with far greater fanfare with COVID and 2020 in the rear-view mirror of a 2021 journey.”
Gladewater is not alone in canceling its parade, as Longview, Liberty City, Lindale and Kilgore have nixed their parades due to COVID-19 concerns and the City of Marshall also is not having a traditional Christmas parade this year.
Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order in July that prohibits outdoor events to no more than 10 people without permission from the mayor or county judge. Although Abbott has since eased other pandemic-related restrictions, the one concerning outdoor gatherings is unchanged.