KENNEWICK, Wash. -- Columbia Center mall in Kennewick will stage the Tri-Cities' first holiday parade of the season on Saturday.
The fun begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, and visitors are encouraged to line up in front of mall between Starbucks and Twigs Bistro and Martini Bar.
The parade route will pass in front of the outside store fronts, then Santa will enter the mall and head for the food court.
"Everyone will follow Santa and his elves to the food court where he will light the tree," said Patricia Bardin, director of marketing and business development at the mall for the Simon Property Group. "This will be great fun for the whole family, and I hope to see this event grow with the community each year."
The holiday parade, which is rare in the Tri-Cities, will feature fire trucks from Richland, Kennewick and Pasco, the award-winning Hanford High School marching band, Mid-Columbia cheerleaders and homecoming royalty, Miss Washington Outstanding Teen Taylor Plunkett, the hosts of Good Morning Northwest, Kennewick police Chief Ken Hohenberg, costumed characters, winners of the Faces of Columbia Center's Kidgits contest, Kennewick General Hospital's Mrs. Claus and her Elves -- and Santa.
There will be cookie treats for everyone after Santa lights up the official Christmas tree, reads a book based on the classic tale, We Wish You a Merry Christmas and conducts a holiday music sing-a-long.
Children can line up to have a photo taken with Santa starting at 10 a.m.
Visitors are encouraged to bring a coat for the annual Coats for Kids collection, which provides warm clothing for needy children.
Admission is free. For more information, call 509-783-2109.
* Dori O'Neal: 509-582-1514; firstname.lastname@example.org