(2016 file photo)
This year’s Christmas in the City parade is a special one to Beth Kemp, executive director of Batavia Business Improvement District.
It will resume the years-old holiday event after the pandemic shut down, and close out a chapter on Kemp’s career path. She is leaving the role for a position in marketing and accounting with Council Rock Wealth Advisory Group in Batavia.
“December 10 will be my last day. This is my last big parade; the parade is kind of my baby, I love it,” she said to The Batavian Friday morning. “It’s like a well-oiled machine at this point, and I hope it will continue.”
Thirty-four participants have signed up for the parade, set to begin at 6 p.m. Saturday outside of Wendy’s restaurant on Main Street, Batavia. Floats, costumed characters, and music will follow a route that leads toward Summit Street.
Christmas in the City was originally dubbed Taste of the Holidays, which is when Kemp first became involved with it. She was on an event committee and was integral to the creation of a festive parade as part of the renamed event. Meant to be a family-friendly, fun downtown happening, Christmas in the City runs from 2 to 6 p.m., ending with the parade.
A train ride, several vendors, pictures with Santa, hot cocoa, professional carolers and an elf, the Muckdogs mascot, and a GO-ART! building-turned-Whoville will be part of the excitement. There will also be hidden gnomes at downtown businesses for kids to find and take photos of for a contest boasting prizes of Muckdogs tickets, a basket full of board games, and more.