Participants sought for 10th annual Parade of Lights on Nov. 24

File photos by Tom Rivers: Takeform Architectural Graphics in Medina won the grand prize in in the 2017 Parade of Lights by creating a scene of Medina on a flatbed trailer.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 22 October 2018 at 8:20 am

MEDINA – It’s not too early to start thinking about a float in this year’s Parade of Lights, scheduled Nov. 24 in downtown Medina .

This will mark the 10th anniversary of the spectacular parade, and the planning committee has been busy for weeks coming up with special features to honor the event.

Provided photo: The committee planning this year’s Parade of Lights is encouraging everyone to start thinking about entering a float in this year’s parade Nov. 24. Special prizes and features will celebrate the parade’s 10th anniversary. Seated from left are chairman Jim Hancock, Trudi Schwert and Reinhard Rogowski. Standing are Dave and Gail Miller, Kathie Valley and Dave Schwert. Committee member Betty Rogowski took the picture.

The parade was an idea of Jim Hancock, who chairs the event. His former pastor at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church , the Rev. Emily Frank, told him about the small town in Michigan where she came from that had been doing a parade of lights for more than a decade.

“I thought if that small town can do it, why can’t Medina,” Hancock said.

He put together a committee and the rest is history, he said.

The parade has continued to grow in support and participation. Each year the committee solicits donations from corporations, individuals and other organizations, who have continued to be very generous, Hancock said.

“I am amazed at how the number and beauty of the floats has grown,” he said. “People from all over our state have seen pictures online and marvel at the floats.”

Hancock is assisted by Dave and Trudi Schwert, Dave and Gail Miller, Reinhard and Betty Rogowski, Kathie Valley, and Duane and Pat Payne. Mark Irwin has also been involved.

This year’s parade will feature four bands – the Medina Mustang Marching Band, Downbeat Percussion (who play during halftime at Buffalo Bills’ games), Mark Time Marchers and Prime Time Brass.

Trudi Schwert said the Downbeat Percussion band is from Syracuse and approached Medina to be in the parade.

In honor of the 10th anniversary, Dave Schwert said each parade entrant is asked to incorporate the number “10” in their float somehow.

Another change is this year the judges will come to the assembly area at the Pickle Factory to talk to entrants and pre-judge the floats.

Matt CM Contracting won the Star Award for a candy cane themed float in 2017.

The grand prize this year for the best overall float will be $1,000. Other prizes will also be awarded to floats in various categories, which include Commercial/Business, Not-for-Profit, Religious, Service Club/Organization, Fire Company, Little Elf Award, Star Award, Community Spirit Award, Santa’s Pick and Other.

“One thing, we know it takes time and effort to construct a float, so we are asking early to give everyone time to develop a float and work on it while the weather is still good,” Dave Schwert said.

The Parade of Lights caps off Medina ’s Olde Tyme Christmas celebration and the arrival of Santa Claus that day. The celebration features children’s activities, food, entertainment, lighting of the Christmas tree in Rotary Park, and fireworks at 5:45, prior to start of the parade at 6 p.m.

The Boy Scouts sell hot beverages, hotdogs and chili at the staging area, and each entrant will receive a $5 coupon toward food.

The parade will leave the Pickle Factory and head down Park Avenue to Main Street, then turn north on Main Street to Pearl Street .

All information, including entry blanks, are available online at or by calling Hancock at 798-2118.

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