Christmas kicks off in Coupeville

Katie, Joey and Justin Burks bundle up while watching the holiday parade Saturday that marks the annual Greening of Coupeville.   - Nathan Whalen/Whidbey News-Times
Katie, Joey and Justin Burks bundle up while watching the holiday parade Saturday that marks the annual Greening of Coupeville.
— image credit: Nathan Whalen/Whidbey News-Times

Crisp, cold conditions weren’t enough to keep away the crowd looking to enjoy a festive Christmas celebration.

The Greening of Coupeville took place Saturday, Dec. 5, highlighted by a parade, a tree lighting and an art and antique walk.

The parade showcased many of the community organizations, such as the Boy Scouts and the Lions clubs, that are prominent within the historic town.

“It’s a neat parade,” said Rob Myers, who was photographing the participants, including a new float put together by members of the Coupeville United Methodist Church, which his daughter was adorning. “It’s a good turnout for as windy and cold as it is tonight.”

For others, the festivities brought a nice break from holiday shopping. John White had been shopping in Mount Vernon Saturday but made it back to town in time for the parade. He attended with his wife and two black Pomeranians.

The parade started on South Main Street and continued through town until it ended up on Front Street. In addition to the community organizations, groups like the Whidbey Island Basset Hound Club and the Coupeville High School Marching Band enlivened the parade.

Of course, Santa Claus, also known as Paul Messner, was highly popular riding his sleigh behind the parade procession.

Once the parade was complete, crowds of people walked to Cooks Corner park to enjoy some hot cider and listen to Christmas carols sung by several members of the Shifty Sailors.

Mayor Nancy Conard thanked Carol Thrailkill for her efforts to organize the parade again for 2009. She also complimented the town’s maintenance staff for their efforts to decorate the park in time for the tree lighting.

“It’s great to be mayor of a town that’s doing another greening,” Conard told the festive assembly. The lights at the park were switched on after the Shifty Sailors finished singing, “Oh Christmas Tree.”

Earlier Saturday, about 100 walkers and runners ventured to Fort Ebey State Park to participate in the annual Jingle Bell Trail Run and Walk. Central Whidbey Chamber of Commerce executive director Linda Eccles said that despite the chilly conditions, the run was a success.

The merchants in downtown Coupeville kept their stores open later to hold the quarterly arts and antique walk. The extended hours allowed folks to peruse the unique stores that line the streets of downtown Coupeville and look for a unique gift for a loved one.

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