Del Norte Parade of Lights set for mid-December

DEL NORTE — Mark the calendar and be ready to be whisked away to a childhood favorite this year for the Del Norte Parade of Lights. This year’s theme is an ode to a classic Christmas movie that has been shared through living rooms since 1964 and will now grace the streets of Del Norte on Dec. 15.

Parade participants can let their imaginations fly as they decorate floats, businesses, and homes throughout town as the “Island of Misfit Toys.” This theme is a wonderful opportunity to make use of old toys and to get creative with displays for the holiday season. Join in on the fun and bring a touch of Christmas to town for this wonderful time of year. Residents and businesses are invited to participate this year in lighting up Del Norte.

Those wishing to participate in the parade need only to decorate their vehicles, trailers, ATVs, vintage vehicles or even themselves to join in on the fun. The night is packed full of opportunities for some Christmas shopping at local businesses and a chance to meet Santa at the High Valley Community Center, and local merchants will be hosting sales and holiday fun throughout the month of December so be sure to come and support local businesses this season. An additional Merchant Open House will kick off the fun on Dec. 1.

The Del Norte Chamber of Commerce and the 1% For Del Norte Committee has set up a Merchant Passport that is available at participating businesses where shopper can fill out the card while they shop and receive a local business discount, rewards or free gifts depending on how the card is filled out. Shoppers can use their creativity to show their support for the local businesses and community by participating.

Along with the Merchant Open House on the evening of the parade, the Rio Grande County Museum is hosting an adult-only presentation on the Christmas Camp, Fremont’s Fatal Fourth Expedition with keynote speakers — retired Archeologist Ken Frye and Rio Grande National Forest Fisheries and Wildlife Program Manager Jason Remshardt. The museum will be open at 4:30 p.m. with the presentation beginning at 5:15 p.m. and will finish before the start of the parade.

This is a great opportunity to learn about one of the most infamous expeditions known throughout the western United States. Both Frye and Remshardt have researched and worked with archeological teams on the actual Christmas Camp site and have spent years learning about the fatal expedition that claimed the lives of several men and burros.

Fireworks will follow the parade from the top of Lookout Mountain (D Mountain) so be sure to stick around for additional holiday celebrations. For more information, visit