PORT JERVIS – The tri-state community will be transformed this Sunday afternoon to a musical, lighted, marching, creative holiday wonderland. Whimsical settings and festive quirky characters will be featured in two events hosted back to back.
First, the 47th Annual Rick Drew Holiday Parade will line up at 1 p.m. Sunday on Canal Street in Port Jervis with a holiday-themed cast of characters. The parade will step off at 2 p.m. and make its way down Pike Street, across the Mid-Delaware Bridge, and along Pennsylvania Avenue to the Matamoras firehouse. There hot chocolate and donuts will be served, trophies awarded, music provided by DJ G, and families may visit and take photos with Santa Claus.
Sponsored by the Tri-State Chamber of Commerce, the parade will include individuals, families, organizations, canine groups, bands, holiday-adorned firetrucks, and well-known holiday characters such as Frosty, Santa’s elves, and the jolly guy in red himself.
“The Tri-State Chamber is also thrilled to honor Matt Osterberg as this year’s Parade Grand Marshal,” said Ulana Emerson, Chamber President. “Matt is being honored for his decades of service to Pike County and surrounding communities. We hope that everyone will come out to celebrate with us during the parade on Sunday, Dec. 9.”
Osterberg, chairman of Pike County Commissioners, has decades of volunteer service in such organizations as the Pike County Development Agency, Minisink Valley Historical Society, Historical Preservation Trust of Pike County, Port Jervis Elks, and Knights of Columbus. He and his family will lead the parade in a convertible and will be on hand to greet participants as they pass the parade reviewing stand.
Another component of the parade is the collection of new shoes, sneakers, and boots, which has been underway through the Chamber and Port Jervis Rotary Club. New shoes in children’s sizes may be dropped off through Parade Day at The Gun Lady, 41 Front St., State Farm Insurance, 20 E. Main St., Jeff Bank, 20 Fowler St., Edward Jones, 139 Pike St., and Phil’s Ford, 257 E. Main St. Kucher’s Kids Shoe Drive, now in its third collection year, honors the beloved shoemaker Josef Kucher, who operated a shop in downtown Port Jervis for decades and who was brutally attacked in his shop on Nov. 7, 2014 and died the following day.
Following the parade, a much-anticipated new event will take place in downtown Port Jervis. “Whoville Comes to Port” will begin at 3 p.m. and will include Whoville-attired characters and special treats distributed by many of the downtown businesses.
Sponsored by the Historic Downtown Merchants Association, the event will include many of the characters from Dr. Seuss’ holiday story "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," including The Grinch, Cindy Lou Who, Laura Lou Who and her cousins Maria Moo Who, Kyla Koo Who, and Hannah Hula Who, and even the Mayor of Whoville. Makeup will be professionally applied by Dani Masterson and Michael Worden.
Stores participating with refreshments, gifts, sale discounts, photos, and other special surprises will include Unreal Photography, Brother Bruno’s, Fogwood & Fig, 108 Lotus Yoga, 5th & Grace, The Gun Lady, Maricel’s Attic, Fox N Hare, The Erie, Taste of Sicily, Polished Nail Salon and Karate Dojo Quest.
“There will be holiday professional photos, Christmas carols, treats, gift shopping and a special appearance by someone who can use some holiday cheer,” said Maria Mann, president of HDMA. “Come dressed up as a Who and join in on the interaction for a chance to win some prizes on this fun-filled day for everyone!”
“Grab a candy cane or two or three and shout to the rooftop, 'I’m a Who. That’s me!'”
For more information on the Historic Downtown Merchants Association or the Whoville event, visit facebook.com/events/194712138111383, email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Mann at 845-551-9265.