PERRIS, Calif. (December 17, 2019) –– An overcast and blustery winter day was not enough to hinder the 31st annual Christmas Parade that took place in the downtown district of the City on December 14, 2019.
More than 10,000 Perris residents lined the streets of downtown Perris to watch performances by 13 marching bands from local high schools in surrounding cities such as Pomona, Lake Elsinore, Moreno Valley and Menifee took part.
Viewers of the parade also got to witness classic cars and motorcycle displays, dance performances from local community groups and City-sponsored dance teams, city-staff members ride e-bicycle and e-scooters riders to promote the G.E.A.R. program, the beauty of the local equestrian units and even enjoy a visit by the Grand Marshal, good ol’ Santa Claus himself.
Perris Mayor Michael Vargas and the Perris City Council were among the dignitaries riding down historic D Street en route to City Hall during the parade, each in a classic automobile, courtesy of Canyon Lake Car Club, Motte Museum and Perris Valley Auto Center, polished and shined to perfection.
The event, which feature a little more than 2,500 participants, began with an opening prayer and the pledge of allegiance by Pastor Quinn Hawley and the national anthem, sung by Sarina Gilmore, officially kicking off the event as anxious spectators watched from the sidewalks. The winter chill made for a perfect environment to enjoy a parade and Perris Mayor Michael M. Vargas, who arrived in a new 2020 Kia Optima, courtesy of the Perris Valley Auto Center, was happy to see such a turnout and is excited about the new year.
“This is a very good turnout and we couldn’t have asked for better weather for a Christmas parade,” said Vargas. “I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. I think 2020 is going to be an exceptionally good year for Perris. If you think good things are happening now, it’s going to get even better in 2020.”
Mayor Pro Tem Marisela Magaña, who arrived in an orange 1950 Jeepster, compliments of the Canyon Lake Car Club, loved the turn out and holiday spirit that was evident in the atmosphere.
“We see a community come together to celebrate the holiday and bring the holiday cheer,” said Magaña. “Thank you for attending today and to our staff for putting this event. Happy holidays and a Happy New Year!”
Council Member Rita Rogers was also in attendance, arriving in a 1955 baby blue Chevy Bel Air, talked about the importance of the holiday season, challenging all to help others.
“It is such a blessed season, the Christmas season. It’s a season to help everyone who needs help and give to others,” said Rogers. “It’s a time to be with family and demonstrate love and kindness.”
Council Member David Starr Rabb, who arrived in a 1929 Model-T Ford, compliments of the Canyon Lake Car Club, commented how these events bring out the diversity in the community and wished everyone a joyous holiday season.
“I love how this event shows our diversity as a City,” said Rabb. “I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, a Happy Holiday and a Happy New Year. You have earned it and enjoy your time off and with your families.”
Council Member Malcom Corona rode a bike in the parade with his son, Malcom, also ride a bike. The proud father said it was a memorable experience that he will not soon forget and wished the best to the community he represents.
“It’s been a great parade and we want everyone to know that our city cares about the residents. Our parades get better and better every year, with so many high schools and different communities participating,” said Corona. “I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and encourage everyone to make 2020 the best year of your life!”