NEWTOWN - The spirit of the season broke through the gloominess of the day as this year’s McCaffrey’s Food Markets Newtown Holiday Parade marched through town with a holiday sparkle in its eye. From the instrumentalists playing holiday tunes to the jolly “Ho! Ho! Ho’s” coming from Santa Claus, even the Grinch, riding aboard the First National Bank float felt the spirit as he waved to the crowd. Despite the occasional drizzle and overcast and foggy skies, hundreds lined the parade as temperatures reached into the 50s.
Smiles, laughter and excitement were everywhere Sunday afternoon as the McCaffrey's Christmas Parade spread music and joy from one end of Newtown to the other. Organized by the Newtown Business Association, the parade had all the trimmings of the season from dancing trees and candy canes to Santa and Mrs. Claus who traveled from the North Pole for the parade. "Ho! Ho! Ho! Merry Christmas," said Santa from his seat of honor aboard an antique Newtown fire engine as it rolled down State Street. "What a great turnout of people," he said as he waved to the thousands of people lining the parade route from the Stocking Works, through the historic State Street business district and along Sycamore Street. "It warms my heart to see so many people and the holiday spirit alive and well in Bucks County." District Judge Mick Petrucci and Newtown Borough tax collector Judy Musto provided a running commentary of the parade from their balcony seats overlooking Sycamore Street at Goodnoe Corners. It was the place to be as performers turned the street into a stage entertaining the crowds with dancing, twirling flags and music. Escorted by Newtown Township Police Chief Rick Pasqualini and Newtown Borough Chief Tony Wojciechowski, the parade stepped off with an American Legion color guard from Newtown Post 440. Musket fire filled the air as the 1st Crossing Volunteers, an 18th century re-enactment group from Crossing Community Church, brought back the days of the American Revolution.
It wasn't record-breaking heat, but it was on the hot side as the Mercury played a game of cat and mouse with the 90s. So as firefighters Joe Martindell and Scott Ratcke arrived at the Newtown Elementary School, eager youngsters from Camp Newtown ready for this year's "wet down" rushed to greet the fiery red engine, which glistened in the late June sun. As the Newtown firefighters unscrewed a fire hydrant and hooked up a hose line, the kids watched every movement with unbridled enthusiasm, almost in a hypnotic stare. Suddenly, a loud horn split the hazy afternoon air sending the 160 campers scrambling into the school's parking lot as they braced themselves for the soaking of their young lives.