- The parade is at night in the December. The parade starts at 6:30. If you've ever been to Minnesota in December, you know it gets COLD. And once the theoretical sun goes down, it gets even colder. So if you have plans to head to the parade and it's snowed 14 inches with -34 windchill, you can stay home, be safe, and go a different night! *Tip: The Holidazzle Parade does occasionally get canceled for bad weather. It's always a good idea to check local broadcast stations for cancellations if it's extra cold, windy, or snowy.
- Its a fun and FREE event to take any family and friends who may be visiting. We had family visiting from out of state and decided to meet up at the parade. Fun! Free! Festive! *Tip: I talk a lot about the hot seats in this post, because that was our experience this year, but there are plenty of free options for viewing the parade. People do bring a blanket and cozy up outdoors. If you get there early, you can view the parade from above in the skywalk. The parade route spans Nicollet Mall, a pedestrian mall lined with shops and restaurants. You can easily enjoy some pre-parade shopping and view the parade while enjoying a snack or meal by sitting at a window seat.
- It's not a big commitment. The parade lasts about 20 minutes. Some of you may be wondering if a 20 minute parade is worth it. I'd say it's worth doing at least once. And trust me, you don't want to be out there much longer than 20 minutes. And did I mention it's free?
- It keeps the crowds down. We went on a Thursday night, so it may be more crowded on a weekend evening or perhaps a milder evening, but I guess the good thing about a parade in December is that no one is anxious to get there early...and it's not necessary.
Best: It's a parade at night. The lights are festive and the floats are creative. The parade participants are wonderfully cheerful...or they are just moving as much as possible to stay warm. Many of the costumed characters from the stories are riding on or walking near the floats. The Wicked Witch from The Wizard of Oz was pretty awesome riding her bicycle. And pretty much everything is illuminated, including marching band costumes and choir robes.
Worst: It's a parade at night in December. I'm hardy, but it's December!
|Dancing Christmas lights--There's a person in each one!|
|The Wizard of Oz|
|Not sure what this was|
|Hansel and Gretel|
|Illuminated marching band|
|Santa and his reindeer|
Overall my preschooler had a blast. The toddler just soaked it all in. Next year we'll bring a stroller and skip the hot chocolate.