Cartersville Christmas parade set for Dec. 3 gets an OK from City Council. Summerville adopts ‘reverse parade’ concept. What other communities have announced so far.

Cartersville Christmas parade set for Dec. 3 gets an OK from City Council. Summerville adopts ‘reverse parade’ concept. What other communities have announced so far.

Previously: Coosa Valley Credit Union’s massive entry into the Cartersville parade. The entry would go on to win first place in the commercial division. Courtesy of Stephanie Graves.


Cartersville Christmas parade OK’d by City Council. Here’s the latest:

“We have official approval by City of Cartersville to organize the Cartersville Exchange Club Christmas Parade on Thursday, Dec. 3. For those interested in participating, we encourage them to visit our website, Cartersville Exchange Club, to complete our online registration form. In order to comply with city and state recommendations, we ask that all participants and spectators practice social distancing and that face masks be worn.”

The parade begins at 6 p.m. that Thurdsday; lineup begins at 4 p.m. at Tabernacle Church.  The rain date is the following Thursday, Dec. 10, at 6 p.m.

WZQZ 99.1 FM and 1180 AM reports that Summerville also will use a “reverse-parade” concept (see Cedartown below) where “floats” will be set up along East and West Washington streets and observers will drive by in their vehicles to view the “parade.” It will be held Saturday, Dec. 5, from 6-8 p.m.

Other community parade decisions so far:
  • Rome: Set for 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 1, downtown Rome. Limited to 40 units this year. Rome plans
  • Cedartown: A ‘reverse’ Christmas parade is set for Dec. 5 from 6-8 p.m. at the Polk County Fairgrounds. Floats and displays will be stationary at the fairgrounds with a drive-in experience for viewers. No charge to enter a float or to attending the reverse parade.
  • Calhoun: Canceled for 2020.
  • Health Director Dr. Gary Voccio has said large gatherings, such as parades, where social distancing is an issue “pose the highest risk.”

 Media release: Tis the season for holiday magic and a little bit of creative thinking for Cedartown officials. With earlier city-sponsored special events put on hold this year because of COVID-19, officials were determined to think out of the gift box concerning the annual Christmas parade and come up with a safe solution.

As an annual event where thousands of residents and out-of-town guests  gather along a one-mile long parade route, requiring and enforcing onlookers to socially distance themselves from others would be next to impossible. “The parade has always been a huge draw for residents. There’s no way to know what these next few weeks will bring as far as the number of local COVID-19 cases and continuing or new state-mandated guidelines,” said Cedartown City Manager Edward Guzman. “As a governing entity, we are required to follow these guidelines, and so the typical parade had to be modified.”

The results of that modification resulted in the idea of a “reverse parade.” This is an event where floats and displays are stationary and spaced apart, and those wishing for a dose of seasonal merriment can simply drive-through and enjoy it from the safety of their vehicle.

The event, slated for Dec. 5 from 6 until 8 p.m., will be set up inside the Polk County Fairgrounds, ensuring plenty of space for displays and allowing vehicles a wide loop of roadway to take in the twinkling lights and Christmas decorations. Santa, of course, has been made aware of the changes and he has agreed to make changes to his toy production schedule and attend the event.

The theme for this year’s event is “Let It Snow.” Churches, businesses, organizations and residents wishing to participate this year are asked to decorate according to the theme. Prize money up to $500 will be awarded. Categories and prizes include: church division (first place $500, second place $300 and third place $200); open division (first place $500, second place $300 and third place $200) and an overall winner will be awarded $500.

Entrants must provide their own power (if needed). Electrical access will not be available at the fairgrounds.

Floats are welcome to participate but so are displays and live nativities. For more information on the parade, visit

Applications and rules are also available on the city’s website. The deadline to enter the event is Tuesday, Dec. 1 at 5 p.m. There is no entry fee and the event is free.

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