Members of the Siesta Key Village Association met in the offices of Cheryl Gaddie Designs and Smith Architects Thursday, Sept. 13, for their first official meeting to plan the Nov. 24 Light Up the Village holiday festivities and parade.
During the first portion of the meeting, attendees were divided into committees to appropriately distribute the work required to prepare for the annual celebration, which was revived two years ago. Committees were organized by marketing; lights and entertainment; luminary; signs and gazebo decoration; parade organization; and parking-lot duties.
Tasks assigned to the committees included acquiring a donated or sponsored Christmas tree, creating sponsorship packages, contacting performers, decorating the Village with lights, finalizing the parade route, acquiring permits for road closures and finding a Santa Claus.
Members also discussed issues of logistics and safety, such as which float will carry Santa and where the post-parade performers should be located.
The biggest concern expressed by all attendees was continuing efforts to secure live entertainment by local groups, such as the Riverview High School Kiltie Band, as well as confirming more parade participants. Other entertainment prospects included the Sarasota Pipe Band, the Siesta Key Beach drum circle, circus performers and tae kwon do demonstrations. As in years past, a county fire truck, as well as a vintage one owned by a SKVA member, will add some flair to the parade.
The parade procession will begin at 5:40 p.m., and its tentative route will follow Beach Road from Avenida Del Mare north to Ocean Boulevard into the Village, before Santa will dismount his float at Siesta Key Plaza and hand out candy and gift bags to kick off the Light Up the Village festivities.
The group hopes to have between 25 and 30 floats participating in the parade, and the committees will work individually on their assigned tasks until the next meeting Oct. 4.
The committee encourages anyone interested in submitting a float to contact Cheryl Gaddie at 346-7401.
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