By Frank Lewis
Friday evening, Dec. 4, beginning at 6 p.m., the Christmas weekend will kick off in New Boston with the First New Boston Christmas Youth Rally which will be held at the Church of God Mount Assembly on Gallia Street in New Boston. Youth Pastor Josh Holbrook will be coordinating the event and will feature entertainment, worship and fellowship with youth from the area. For more information on the youth rally you can call 456-5561.
Saturday morning, Dec. 5 at 9 a.m., the Village of New Boston will host its annual Breakfast with Santa at the New Boston Community Center. The traditional free breakfast of pancakes, sausage and coffee, juice and milk will be served and Santa will be available to talk to the children. This year Mayor Junior Williams and Village Council have changed the name of the event to “James Warren, Jr., Breakfast with Santa.”
“The annual breakfast was Mayor Warren’s special project that he always put his heart and soul into each year,” Payton said. “He loved giving back to the community.”
The Village of New Boston has also announced all of the features of their annual Christmas Parade scheduled for this Saturday afternoon, Dec. 5, beginning at 5 p.m. It is one of the few night Christmas parades in the area and President of Council Mike Payton says the parade has grown bigger each year.
The parade will leave the New Boston Mall parking lot (old Walmart lot) and circle around the village and back to the fire station where the New Boston Kiwanis Club will be offering free hot chocolate and cookies and Santa will be there to meet the children.
This year’s Grand Marshall will be long-time New Boston resident John Wickline, retired from the New Boston School District after 40 plus years of service. Wickline was for many years the public address announcer for New Boston High School basketball and most other sports.
“We are very honored to have John as our Grand Marshall this year,” Payton said. “His knowledge of New Boston history, particularly New Boston sports history, is legendary. He represents what ‘Tiger Pride’ is all about.”
Payton said the parade will be leaving the parking lot area at 5 p.m. so all those interested in being in the parade should arrive at 4 p.m. for lineup. He said there is no entry fee and everyone is welcome.
“We have been particularly proud to have such a great participation of area churches in this parade over the years. Churches of any denomination are welcome to enter a float, van, truck or car. Our church participation has grown each year and it was the primary focus when we decided to start this parade,” Payton said. “Christmas is about God, church and family as far as I am concerned. Faith is part of what our country was founded upon and we are very proud to have such a great participation by area churches. We have churches from not just New Boston, but Portsmouth, West Portsmouth, Wheelersburg, Clay township area and South Shore. All are welcome from anywhere.”
Payton said those involved in organizing the event are asking that no one bring any huge tractor-trailer rigs as the streets are too narrow to manipulate a turn, especially with the crowds.
Traffic will be stopped and delayed from 5 p.m. to approximately 6 p.m., depending on the pace of the parade. The New Boston Police department will be regulating traffic so in the event, emergency vehicles will be free to get through.
Anyone needing information can call the village office at 740-456-4103.
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.