Festival of Lights starts Friday night

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MACLEOD PAPPIDAS | THE DAILY WORLDA bedecked logging truck with a load lit up like a batch of candy canes makes its way down Main Street during the Festival of Lights parade in Montesano.
MACLEOD PAPPIDAS | THE DAILY WORLD A Montesano fire truck inches through downtown Montesano Saturday night carrying the Bulldog drill team during the annual Festival of Lights parade.

This year’s Festival of Lights falls on Saturday, Dec. 13, and the 2014 theme is “The 12 Days of Christmas.”

The big parade starts at 6 p.m. with the annual lighting of the yule log at Fleet Park at 7 p.m.

And although there’s sure to be lots of smiles all over, some explanation is likely in order to tell the kids that there’s no special bus ride for folks to take again this year to visit all of the houses decorated in great style.

The Festival of Lights will again have to do without that favorite tradition — and this is one you really can blame the federal government on.

The days of Grays Harbor Transit picking up thousands of enthusiasts and taking them throughout the city on a look at some of the best-decorated homes across the Harbor is over. Instead, because of new federal regulations governing the way Transit allows the buses to operate, thousands of cars will have to take a self-guided tour.

Maps of the route will be handed out to residents at the annual parade on Dec. 14. And The Vidette has re-printed the map in this special section.

Extra police will be on hand the night of the Festival of Lights for traffic control


This year’s festival starts Friday evening, Dec. 12, with Christmas carols and hors d’oeuvres from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Montesano High School commons. It’s a music review featuring some of the best singers on the Harbor.

The event continues Saturday at 8 a.m. with a pancake breakfast with Santa and silent auction at Montesano Community Center. Cost is $5 per person and breakfast goes until 10:30 a.m.

The craft fair and bazaar with many local wares and artist displays goes from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Montesano Junior High gym.

The Christmas Cantata returns this year at 7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 14 at the Montesano United Methodist Church.


The annual Jingle Bell Jog, a two-mile fun walk or a 10K race starts at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 13. Pre-register at Montesano High School at a cost of $20 for adults or $15 for children or go to the event beginning at 8 a.m. for registration and the cost is $25 for adults on site and $17 for children. Meet Saturday morning at the corner of Pioneer and Fleet Street.


Friday, Dec. 13

6:30-8:30 p.m. — Live vocal entertainment & hors d’oeuvres, Montesano High School commons

Saturday, Dec. 14

8:00-11:00 a.m. Pancake breakfast/silent auction with Santa, Montesano Community Center

9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. — Courthouse tours

10 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. — Craft fair and Christmas bazaar, Montesano High School commons

10 a.m. to 8 p.m. — Chehalis Valley Historical Museum tours

11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. — $5 Festival meal, Montesano Community Center

11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. — Face painting, Santa’s Sweet Shop, gift shop, live music & raffle.

1 p.m. — Cribbage tournament, City Hall.

1-4 p.m. — Live local performers at G.H. County Courthouse.

1 p.m. — Olympic Flute Choir

2 p.m. — Simpson Kids Choir

3 p.m. – Montesano High School Choir

2-3 p.m. — Children’s program at the library

2-3 p.m. — Kid’s cupcake decorating, Montesano Community Center

3:30-5 p.m. — Scavenger hunt presented by Umpqua Bank

4-7 p.m. — Cocoa Factory, Montesano Fitness Center studio

4-6 p.m. — Chowder Feed at Fire Department

4-7 p.m. — Homemade chili & cornbread, Moose Lodge

5-6 p.m — Open house & refreshments at the library

6 p.m. — Grand Parade, 2014 Grand Marshal Bruce Hooper (See parade route on Page 10)

7 p.m. — Lighting of the Yule Log at Fleet Park

7 p.m. — Live music with Highland Bag Pipe Band at Fleet Park

7 p.m. — Self-guided driving tours of Montesano’s decorated homes and businesses (see map on Page 9)

7-8:30 p.m. — Live Nativity at the Montesano Presbyterian Church.

8 p.m. — Dukes of Swing, Moose Lodge.