August 8, 2022

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Hundreds of people lined the streets in downtown for the Annual Los Banos Christmas Parade...

Hundreds of people lined the streets in downtown for the Annual Los Banos Christmas Parade on Friday night.

There were people wearing Christmas tree lights wrapped around their necks, others wearing Santa hats as everyone bundled up and watched as the parade proceeded along the route.

“It’s fantastic coming out of that COVID lockdown,” said Los Banos Mayor Tom Faria. “We’re finally getting everyone together again to celebrate the holidays. It’s beautiful. This is kind of like Los Banos’ own little Hallmark movie.”

Like the city of Merced, because of the COVID-19 pandemic Los Banos decided to have a drive-through Christmas parade last year where people stayed in their cars and drove by displays set up on the side of the street.

“Everyone missed (the parade) a lot,” Faria said. “This is always one of the biggest events of the year. We always figure we get about two, three, maybe 4,000 people. The stores are selling hot cocoa. It just feels so good.”

Main Street was decorated with lights around trees.

The Christmas Parade featured floats with dance teams, inflatable Santas, Grinches, Baby Yodas, cheerleaders, local FFA clubs and Cub Scouts. Also taking part in the parade were local businesses, school bands, car clubs, dancing horses and law enforcement.

Santa Claus closed out the parade as he made his way down Main Street in a convertible.

The event ended at Henry Miller Plaza where the Christmas tree lights were lit.

Sports writer Shawn Jansen has been covering Merced area sports for 20 years. He came to Merced from Suisun City and is a graduate of San Diego State University. Prior to the Sun-Star, Shawn worked at the Daily Republic in Fairfield.


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