Houston’s annual Christmas parade is today in downtown Houston. The event begins at 2 p.m.

Everyone planning to participate should be at the Hiett Gymnasium parking lot by 1 p.m. to line-up and be judged. Each entrant must fill out a form and register in the religious or non-religious categories. Entries will be accepted until 2 p.m. Friday at the Houston chamber office at 501 E. Walnut St. in the Houston Visitors Center or at the registration booth in the gymnasium parking lot on the day of the parade. Judging begins at 1:30 p.m. Current entries include floats from area churches and businesses, along with trucks, tractors, stage coach and walking entries.

The chamber said this year’s grand marshals are Rick and Sheila Walker, and they will be joined by special guests of honor, Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus. The Claus couple will spend extra time in Houston immediately following the parade to read Christmas stories to children under the pavilion in the Lone Star Plaza. Mrs. Claus said she was planning to bring cookies for the children. In the event of inclement weather, Santa and Mrs. Claus will entertain at the Houston Visitors Center.  

In the plaza after the parade, the chamber will draw the winner of a gun raffle. Tickets can be purchased at the Houston chamber office or from the organization’s board members. Tickets are $1 each or $5 for six. The prize is a Camo Savage Arms .308 and a Pink Camo Savage Arms .243. Both will go to one winner.  The claimant must be able to pass a NICS background check and be at least 18. Three attempts will be made to notify the winner. All forfeited prizes will be donated back to the chamber All tickets sold are non- refundable.

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