Update: This is a rain or shine event. Any rain is expected to start falling around 7 p.m. The parade should be wrapped up by 6:30 p.m., according to the chamber.
Islip Hamlet’s yearly holiday parade is all set for the first weekend of December.
The festivities, which all happen on Main Street, start Saturday, Dec. 1. at 5 p.m.
“Our Santa Parade is the most amazing event of the year,” said Doris Kennedy, president of the Islip Chamber of Commerce, which runs the parade. “The entire community comes out and the town is gushing with holiday spirit.”
That holiday spirit can be felt and seen when the dressed-up marchers, holiday-adorned vehicles, and the Islip Fire Department escorting Santa Claus, all march down Main Street.
The route of the parade starts at Ocean Avenue and travels east to Islip Town Hall, where the night will culminate with a Christmas tree lighting.
A very special community member will also be honored that night, says Kennedy.
“Our grand marshal this year is Lt. Col. Charles Valdes, who recently returned from three years in Kuwait,” she said.
Valdes, who served in the military for over 25 years, is an Islip High School graduate who still lives in Islip with wife, Jessica, and son Michael.