A charming parade

ROSEMARY MCLENNAN
Last updated 11:55 12/12/2012
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ROSEMARY McLENNAN
Rags to riches: Anything Goes owner Lara Hunt is Cinderella at Saturday’s Upper Hutt Leader Santa Parade. Hard work earned her first prize in the best business category for her two floats featuring Disney mascots, left, and the Grinch Who Stole Christmas following it.

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Creating two floats for this year's Upper Hutt Leader Santa Parade won Anything Goes Costume Hire owner Lara Hunt first equal for them both on Saturday.

It is rare for a business to enter two floats.

Mrs Hunt and husband Daniel created a Grinch Who Stole Christmas float about three years ago.

The Grinch always gets a hard time from the crowd, Mrs Hunt says.

Every year they have improved it and this year decided to add a Disney's Christmas-themed float to travel ahead of it.

Mrs Hunt dressed as Cinderella. She was accompanied by her one staff member Annette Lovato - Snow White - and many friends wearing various costumes.

Abbott Haulage provide a truck for the Grinch, and Silbery Longrun gave their truck for the Disney float.

Judges Councillor Hellen Swales, Peter Benner from Expressions and Rick Clapham from the Upper Hutt Leader were unanimous in giving Anything Goes the business section first prize.

Gillies and Mark the Professionals were awarded third prize in the business section.

In the community category, the winner was the Timberlea Community Centre. Second the Upper Hutt Dog Training School and third William Booth Educare.

The judges said they were impressed with the community and business involvement, and the standard of the floats was much higher than last year.

Upper Hutt turned on a cloudy but warm day to welcome Santa to the city. Crowds from babies to people pushing walkers or riding mobility scooters were there to cheer participants on and welcome the Man in Red on his reindeer- drawn sleigh.

Riding with him were local children Kaleb MacFarlane, Blake Bolitho, Anais Morgan, Adam Gillies, Zarah King and Maia Johnson.

Children can now meet Santa daily at The Mall.

The best of our photos can be ordered at pix.ccn.co.nz.

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- Upper Hutt Leader

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