Edward parade to collect gifts for local children
Published 7:04 pm Friday, December 19, 2014
EDWARD — The final Beaufort County parade of the holiday season will roll through the streets of Edward Sunday afternoon, but this event will have a bit of a twist this year.
Edward Christian Church, which will host the fifth annual parade, has decided to offer participants the opportunity to help children in the local community have a merrier Christmas, according to church pastor David Linton.
“Our only cost to enter the parade is a teddy bear or any stuffed animal,” Linton said. “After the parade, Santa will be at the fellowship hall and he’s going to give all the kids a stuffed animal.”
Families are also invited to bring along their own cameras and take free photos with Santa, Linton added.
The church began sponsoring the parade in 2010 as a way of spreading holiday cheer throughout the Edward community and surrounding areas.
“We just try to do something to bring the community together and to give back to the community,” Linton said. “It has grown and people are really excited about it. I’m excited about it. People ask me all the time if we are doing the parade again.:
The parade begins at 3 p.m. and will proceed down Main Street, before doubling back on its route and making its way to the church fellowship hall.
As always, other churches have been invited to participate. Also expected are local businesses, civic groups and school representatives. Joining the lineup will be units from local fire and rescue organizations as well as entries sponsored by the Shriners, according to Linton.
The role of grand marshal this year is in fact a memorial to the late Tommy Tunstall, who served as a member of the Aurora Volunteer Fire Department and who was instrumental in establishing a substation in the Edward community before his death several years ago.
“After the Edward station was established, Tommy looked after trucks there and he did station upkeep,” said church secretary Jeanne Bonner, a longtime friend of the Tunstall family. “He was usually the first to arrive and take out the Edward truck when there was a fire. Tommy did much through the years to benefit the community of Edward, and we wanted to honor his memory.”
A fire truck bearing a tribute to Tunstall will lead Sunday’s parade.