Pack up the babies and grab the old ladies and get ready for a Grand Junction tradition, the annual Downtown Parade of Lights. This event is not to be missed. With a little info, you and the tribe can enjoy a fantastic evening. Here are a few tips.

The Downtown Parade of Lights is coming up this Saturday, December 2, at 5 p.m., on Main Street in Grand Junction. It follows the same path as any other Grand Junction parade, running down Main Street from 8th to 3rd.

Speaking as someone who has either attended or been in this parade every year for 47 years, let me tell you, some seats are better than others. Where's the best place to get situated?

Check out the map at the top. The parade is a good old-fashioned straight line. There are no twists and turns. So, where will you sit? The little Santa faces represent the beginning and end of the parade route. The little snowmen, well, they represent the best viewing hot spots.

If I might make a suggestion, it would be in your best interest to find a spot between 8th and 7th. Why here? There are several reasons:

  • It's early in the parade route, and those floats handing out candy will still have a full stash. They tend to run out of goodies before they get to the end of the route.
  • It gives parade participants an opportunity to get situated and put a little space between floats.
  • Those floats featuring music have a chance to get things kicked off.
  • It's kind of like going to Disney Land or Wally World... if you sit near the beginning of the parade route, you're much closer to your car when it's time to leave.
  • When you get closer to 4th and 5th Streets, people are pretty much sitting on top of one another, trying to get a good view.

Another good place to sit would be on 3rd Street between Main and Rood. All floats are diverted this way when they reach the end of the route. You can catch the same show as everyone else, just without the crowd.

Under normal circumstances, it would be wise to bring a fairly warm jacket. Considering some parts of Colorado experienced record highs today with temps in the 80's, it might not be a big deal this year. According to the National Weather Service, Saturday's highs will be in the mid-50's, with lows right around freezing.

Don't miss this event! The entire family will enjoy. Be ready to spend a good hour waiting before the parade, especially if you want a good seat. Have the camera ready. See you this Saturday for the annual Downtown Parade of Lights.

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