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Snowfall adds spirit to Madawaska Christmas parade

MADAWASKA, Maine — Northern Maine snowfall combined with small-town Christmas spirit created a picturesque scene at the Acadian Festival Christmas Light Parade in Madawaska on Saturday, Dec. 23.

The Acadian Festival Committee sponsored the event, which was followed by a Christmas party at Madawaska High School.

“I think with the snow it was perfect. It was like a picturesque Hallmark movie; it was beautiful,” said committee member Mindy Braley.

Madawaska native Jennifer Goodrich, 37, of Greenville attended the parade while visiting relatives in the St. John Valley for the holidays. Her nephew, Austin Dechaine, a drum major and junior at Madawaska High School, marched in the parade along with the Pride of Madawaska Marching Band.

Goodrich captured a stunning cell-phone image of John Babin’s horses pulling Santa and Mrs. Claus in a carriage on Main Street.

“The parade brought a smile to everyone’s faces; this is what small towns are all about,” Goodrich said.

One weather-related glitch occurred when the Pride of Madawaska, slated to perform at the Christmas party, was unable to do so.

“The band was supposed to play but their instruments froze and they couldn’t play,” Braley said. However, St. John Valley Sound Express donated their services and provided free entertainment at the event.

Babin provided children with horse-drawn sleigh rides around the high school during the party.

Six businesses participated in the parade. Madawaska Public Safety won first place and Main Street Auto won second for their Christmas-themed floats.

Braley thanked all those who helped make the event a success, including the Acadian Festival Committee for sponsoring the event, the Town of Madawaska, and the community, “for braving the winter weather for our parade and Christmas celebration.”

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