Florence Christmas Parade brings entertainment to community

Churches, businesses, fire departments and more participated in Florence’s annual Christmas parade beginning at 7 p.m. on North Pine Street.

The parade, hosted by First Southern Bank, had participants base their floats around the theme, “Sights & Sounds.” Each float included music and original decorations ranging from a replica Star Wars Walker to a group of women dressed as the iconic leg lamp from “A Christmas Story.”

Fire trucks from county departments, motorcycle groups and even the Florence Trolley Tours workers took part in the procession, tossing treats to the crowd.

Florence local Emily Irvine said the parade was a major improvement to last year, which made it more enjoyable.

“The children we’re excited during the entire stretch,” she said. “A lot of candy was thrown out.”

Junior Josh Smith, a participant of the Pentecostals of Florence’s float, said the 57-degree weather made this year’s parade unique.

“It was warmer than it has been,” he said. “Usually, your goal is to try and keep from freezing, but this year wasn’t the case.”

Smith said the turnout was better than expected, and he estimated 300 people in attendance.

Florence Police Officer Greg Smith said  it was a great experience for all who saw it.

“The parade and everybody was lovely,” he said. “Everybody’s spirit was enjoyable.”

Greg Smith said the parade brings everyone together, regardless of what problems or worries they may have.