Towns expect big turnout for Santa

LAIRD HARPER
Last updated 05:00 13/12/2013

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Santa will be winging his way into Taranaki for a bevy of parades this weekend.

Thousands are expected to line the footpaths in Hawera, Patea, Eltham, Waitara, Inglewood and Okaiawa for a cavalcade of brass bands, decorated floats and Santa.

Patea will be the first to spot jolly old Saint Nick as he lands in the town tonight.

Parade co-organiser Michelle Woollett said this year was the great unknown because they had changed days.

She said the parade had grown year on year and with Carols by Candlelight straight after she hoped people would stay in town.

Then on Saturday Waitara will kick off the festivities, then Eltham and Hawera will get into the Christmas spirit, each with a street festival before the big man's arrival.

At the same time the Great Eltham Christmas Tree Festival will be held at the town's hall and Santa will visit Inglewood as well.

Then its Okaiawa's turn to shine.

Co-organiser Megan Peters said a variety of floats including trucks, tractors and classic cars would be doing the laps in town on Sunday.

Manaia and Opunake celebrate their parades closer to Christmas on December 21 and 24 respectively.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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