It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas in Berkley – and just in time: The eighth annual Holiday Lights Parade will take place Saturday.
Berkley Holiday Committee volunteers spent several evenings this week preparing Santa's antique sleigh and city workers strung up lights under the watchful gaze of Berkley's giant jolly old elf statue at 12 Mile Road and Coolidge Highway.
The preparations are all in anticipation of the day of festivities that will culminate with a tree-lighting ceremony at City Hall.
[Remember to take a camera so you can upload your parade photos to our gallery!]
The event is organized by the all-volunteer Berkley Holiday Committee, composed of community leaders, business owners and residents and spearheaded by co-chairpersons Paul Swayze and Cindy Coon. It is funded entirely by donations, according to a committee press release.
To help you make the most of the day, Patch has put together a handy guide to the festivities!
What you'll see
Participants will include marching bands from Berkley, Royal Oak and Southfield High Schools, representatives from the Brownies, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, community organizations and churches, as well as classic cars and specialty vehicles.
The National Weather Service predicts a high of 51 degrees under partly sunny skies Saturday, with a low of 48 degrees and a chance of showers at night. So, don't forget your umbrella!
1-4:30 p.m.: Free trolley rides will be available for shoppers throughout downtown with “Trolley Stop” signs along Coolidge Highway and 12 Mile.
2-5 p.m.: A petting zoo and pony rides sponsored by Northern Auto Repairs will be held at 12 Mile and Tyler Street between Clark's Ice Cream & Yogurt and Oddfellows Antiques. Last year, Berkley Animal Control officer Gail Briggs reminded visitors to keep their pooches away from the livestock for safety's sake.
5 p.m.: Carolers will sing Christmas songs outside Berkley First United Methodist Church. Community members are invited to join in the fun and pick up a free hot chocolate.
5:30 p.m.: The Holiday Lights Parade will travel east on Twelve Mile from Cummings Street to Coolidge Highway, ending at Berkley City Hall.
Post-parade: Santa will lead a tree-lighting ceremony at the City Hall gazebo. The Berkley Junior Women’s Club will serve hot chocolate and doughnuts.
Post-parade: Carriage rides will be available for a fee outside City Hall on Rosemont.
[Click here to check out photos from last year's parade!]