LINCOLN, Maine — More than 800 people braved a heavy downpour and a moderate chill to usher in the holiday season with a Festival of Lights parade and a lighting of the town Christmas tree on Main Street on Friday.
The parade kicked off promptly at 6:30 p.m. and slowly snaked its way along West Broadway and Main Street before ending at the town public safety building on Adams Street. No incidents were reported, police said.
The rain, which started almost as a mist, became steadily heavier during the parade and finally turned into a downpour by the time the parade ended. The rainfall forced the slight abbreviation of the tree lighting ceremony and the caroling with Ella P. Burr School students, both of which followed the parade.
Amanda Dunn, a former vice president of the Lincoln Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce, which co-sponsored the festival, said she thought things went well despite the rain.
“We had less of a turnout than last year. However, it was still a good turnout,” said Dunn, who is manager of F.A. Peabody Insurance of Lincoln.
More than a dozen floats and vehicles participated in the parade, and Dunn’s company passed out more than 400 plastic glow necklaces to children. Enfield Road residents David and Melanie Dumont donated the tree.
As many as 1,800 people attended the event last year.
Santa Claus, who was the guest of honor at this year’s parade, will appear at Breakfast with Santa at Mattanawcook Academy in Lincoln from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. Saturday. The public is invited.
Tickets cost $5 for adults, $3 for children. Only 300 tickets are available and will be available at the door. Ruhl Photography will offer free pictures with Santa.
The Festival of Lights was sponsored by the Lincoln Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce, with aid from the town.