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Today is Thursday, April 26, 2018

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Photo by Don Benjamin Here they come! A blazing truck leads off the Cedaredge Parade of Lights followed by sparkling horses and a string of community floats. US Bank sponsored this year’s event.
Photo by Don Benjamin Sporting school colors, the CHS marching band paraded down Main Street as Cedaredge celebrated this year’s “All-American Christmas.”
Photo by Don Benjamin Silas, age 6, and Annavah, age 3 1⁄2, had great seats for the Cedaredge Parade of Lights last Saturday. The children balanced on the shoulders of their parents, Josh and Victoria Kasper. Victoria is the music teacher at Garnet Mesa Elementary School. The family lives in Hotchkiss.
Photo by Don Benjamin Generations of area residents turned out for the Cedaredge Parade of Lights. Dwight and Otto Benson of Eckert shared the evening watching prancing horses, handsome shelter dogs, colorful floats and a marching band.
Photo by Don Benjamin Best of the West 4-H club members bundled up for a chilly ride through downtown Cedaredge.
Photo by Don Benjamin Lights flashed and sirens blared as a throng of fire trucks and other first-responder vehicles rolled down Main Street bringing the Cedaredge Parade of Lights to a spectacular finish.

Parade of Lights: everything but snow

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According to Kami Collins, executive director of the Cedaredge Area Chamber of Commerce, the crowd at this year's Parade of Lights was the largest in years. The theme of the Saturday event was "All-American Christmas" and it got underway before nightfall with a concert of holiday tunes performed by the Cedaredge Community Band and a dinner provided by the Cedaredge Community United Methodist Church. Downtown businesses were open for local shopping and town officials served hot drinks and treats.

As the sun set, a full moon shone down and hundreds of spectators assembled along a five-block stretch of Main Street. At 6 p.m. the parade began featuring community floats, horses, shelter pets, and the Cedaredge High School Marching Band.

A float full of enthusiastic youngsters from Cub Scout Pack 482 earned the Judge's Choice Award and the parade ended with a bang when decorated fire engines and other first-responder vehicles filled downtown with flashing lights and sirens. As the parade drew to a close, children and families lined up to meet Santa Claus.

Everyone seemed to agree it was one of the finest pre-holiday events in recent memory. The only thing missing was snow. Already November 2017 has entered the Colorado weather record books as one of the warmest and driest in history. And so far, December seems to be following suit. As for a white Christmas, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) has issued predictions for two of its regional weather stations. According to NOAA projections, Paonia has a 53 percent chance of having one inch or more of snow on the ground on Christmas Day and an 18 percent chance of snow falling that day. The outlook for Grand Junction is a 23-27 percent chance of snow on the ground and a 12-16 percent chance of snow falling.

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Surface Creek
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Cedaredge, Parade of Lights
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