Banks, COMMUNITY, Event

Banks Annual Christmas Light Parade returns for second year

The 2019 Banks Christmas Light Parade. Photo: Stewart Monroe

The Second Annual Banks Christmas Light Parade is still on despite COVID-19 restrictions, but with a twist. 

Instead of lighted parade floats taking a slow trek through town, they’ll stage instead at Sunset Park, and visitors will stay in their cars and drive past the lighted displays, which will be stationary. 

Titled “A drive thru Holiday Light Adventure,” the event is put on by a group of volunteers in Banks, who, according to Marsha Kirk, are expecting Santa himself to make an appearance (this newspaper could not reach Santa for comment), as is the Banks Fire District. At last year’s lighted parade, race cars, trucks, floats and more were all on display, and are expected to return this year as well.

Planned for Saturday, December 12, the event will start at 6 p.m., and the last car will be allowed in at 8 p.m. to ensure all cars have had a chance to drive past the displays and exit the park by 9 p.m.

Visitors will enter the park at the south entrance near Schlegel Hall on Main Street, and then loop through the park where organizers hope to fill approximately 2,175 feet of area with lighted displays along the area where visitors will drive. The exit will be the gated north entrance across from the Banks Middle School. No foot or bicycle traffic will be permitted. There will be no fee to enter, and children can expect a goody bag near the end of the route. There will be no food sales on site. The Washington County Sheriff’s Office will be on hand to direct traffic along with traffic flaggers on Main Street as vehicles enter and exit the park. 

Those wishing to enter a display into the stationary parade can find a form to do so in the coming days at a Facebook page set up for the event.

There is a $20 fee to enter a display.

Questions can be directed to an email set up for the event at [email protected]

Spots for lighted displays will be assigned on a first come, first served basis, and there is no power available on site, so each display entry is responsible for their own electrical needs. Setup will begin at 3 p.m., with a showtime of 6 p.m. Display participants must stay with their entries unless using a restroom due to COVID-19 safety measures, organizers said, and all will be required to leave the park by 10 p.m.

Sunset Park is located in the southwest region of Banks at 12765 NW Main Street.

During the stationary parade, visit and search for “Westsides Greatest Hits” for music from Banks’ local online radio station.

Below: A route showing where to enter the park and where displays are to be located. 

A map of the display location, courtesy Marsha Kirk

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Chas Hundley is the editor of the Banks Post and sister news publications the Gales Creek Journal and the Salmonberry Magazine. He grew up in Gales Creek and has a cat.

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