Coupeville lights up holiday spirit

Santa Claus makes an appearance during the annual Greening of Coupeville parade.   - Nathan Whalen/Whidbey News-Times
Santa Claus makes an appearance during the annual Greening of Coupeville parade.
— image credit: Nathan Whalen/Whidbey News-Times

The rain that had been drenching the island took a break late Saturday afternoon just long enough for the annual parade to usher in the Christmas season on Central Whidbey.

The annual Greening of Coupeville parade went down Main Street toward Front Street as parade participants peppered people lining the streets with candy and the warm holiday spirit.

Community groups, fire engines, public buses, and antique cars, scouts, horses and dogs were just some of the participants in this year’s parade.

There were two Santas book-ending this year’s parade. The Coupeville High School marching band performed and the school’s drama club floated by.

Saturday’s parade started out at Prairie Center, ambled down Main Street and ended up in front of the Island County Museum.

Once the parade finished, everybody headed up to Cook Park to enjoy hot chocolate and cider while singing Christmas carols. Of course, there was the tree lighting in the park. It took two 10-second countdowns for the trees to illuminate.

The tree lighting was one of a host of activities that made for a festive Saturday. Following the lighting, people could stroll the shops of downtown Coupeville, which remained open until 8 p.m. In addition, the Central Whidbey Chamber of Commerce sponsored the first-ever Jingle Trail Run through the paths of Fort Ebey State Park and the parade of boats arrived from the Oak Harbor Yacht Club.

Before the parade, there was a line out the door at Kapaws Iskreme to participate in an annual tradition. Each year, the owners, Paul and Karen Whelan, open their business and give away all of their remaining ice cream before closing for the winter season. The ice cream was gone about an hour later.

The other businesses in Coupeville’s historic downtown remain open with merchants eager to cater to a clientele looking to stay on the island this Christmas.

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