"It's the official kick-off to the holidays," Tyler Krumwiede, organizer for the Parade of Lights, said about the event on Friday, Nov. 29.

The Parade of Lights includes floats and groups of people who are lit up in whatever theme they choose. That could be Christmas, any kind of holiday, winter themed or more. Participates decorate their floats and groups in lights and decorations that can be lit up.

"Everybody loves it every year," Krumwiede said. "It's a tradition."

As of Friday, Nov. 22, Krumwiede said that there were 17 floats signed up. He's expecting to have about 20 by the parade, but the last day to sign up for the event is Monday, Nov. 25.

There is no fee to watch or participate in the parade. United Community Bank is the official sponsor this year, putting them in charge of finding judges for the floats.

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Each float will be judged on their light, the holiday spirit and their creativity. The parade is expected to last between 30 to 45 minutes, and once complete, the community is invited to The Cactus, where the three winning floats will be named and trophies handed out.

Winner of the 2018 Parade of Lights, the City of Perham. (FOCUS file photo)
Winner of the 2018 Parade of Lights, the City of Perham. (FOCUS file photo)

While handing out the awards, The Cactus is also hosting a Kids Christmas Kick-Off party from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. This event is free for kids 14 and younger, and $10 for a meal ticket for kids 15 and older. They will have a hot dog and hot cocoa bar, bowling with Santa and a DIY gift.

"Just come out, relax and have a good time," Krumwiede said. "Shop Perham ... Have fun and stay warm and have a great holiday weekend."

Friday's events

Parade of Lights:

The Cactus awards:

  • Take place right after the parade ends.
  • First-place float (Santa's Choice), second-place float (Mrs. Claus' Choice) and third-place float (The Elves' Choice) will be announced with trophies.

The Cactus Kid's Christmas Kick-Off party:

  • 6:30-8:30 p.m.

  • Free for kids 14 and younger. $10 meal ticket for kids 15 and older.
  • Hotdog and cocoa bar, bowling with Santa and a DIY gift all included.

The Perham Rotary Club's 2018 entry. (FOCUS file photo)
The Perham Rotary Club's 2018 entry. (FOCUS file photo)