Berryville plans holiday activities

Posted: November 22, 2012

The Winchester Star

Berryville — When the John H. Enders Fire Company sounds its fire whistle at noon Dec. 1, the party begins on Main Street in Berryville.

Hundreds of people will line either side of Main Street as the Clarke County Christmas Parade passes through town, said Donna Peake, chair of the parade and Clarke County commissioner of revenue. The event is sponsored by Berryville Main Street and the Clarke County Ruritan Club.

About 200 people are expected to participate in this year’s parade, representing local schools, churches, organizations, and businesses. Another 1,000 people usually line the street, sitting on the sidewalk, standing, or for some little children, watching the parade while perched on their parents’ shoulders.

It isn’t the biggest of parades, but it captures the spirit and sense of community that makes living in Berryville special, she said.

“It brings the community together and gets us in the Christmas spirit,” said Peake, who is chairing the event for the seventh time.

Applications will be taken until Nov. 30 for people who want to sign up last-minute to be in the parade, Peake said. The parade committee needs to know what form the entry will be — float, wagon, car, walkers — and if there will be live animals.

The lineup begins at 11 a.m. on Byrd Avenue, starts at Station Road, follows Main Street and ends at Johnson-Williams Middle School. It lasts about an hour.

Downtown on the day of the Christmas Parade is crazy but fun, said Heidi Grubb-McClemens, owner of the Berryville Grille, 9 E. Main St. Even in cold weather, people are genuinely excited and having a good time.

As the cars and floats pass, participants throw candy to the crowd and it is fun to see the children dashing to scoop them up, she said.

Berryville Grille sells hot chocolate and always has good business the day of the parade, especially at the tables in front of its two bay windows, she said. Some people like watch the parade without having to be outside in the cold.

“It is such a great community event. I look forward to it every year,” she said.

The parade will feature music by the Clarke County High School band and organizations such as local 4-H groups, the Lions Club, the Rotary Club, Boy Scout troops, Relay for Life teams, a steam engine and a trolley, Peake said. Scooby Doo will make his annual appearance, and a large beehive will float down the street for the second year in a row.

The Clarke County Animal Shelter always brings rescue dogs down that can be adopted that day at the shelter, Peake said.

Organizers also have chosen four Snow Princesses, a Snow Maiden and several Snow Babies to ride and walk in the parade, she said. “I have a trailer that is going to pull babies and their mommies through the parade.”

Each year Santa Claus ends the parade as he rides atop one of the Enders fire trucks. He then heads to the Bank of Clarke County lobby at 1 p.m. after the parade is over to meet with children.


To reserve a spot in the parade, call Peake at 540-514-5730.


— Contact Laura McFarland at