GAUTIER, MS (WLOX) - It felt a lot like Christmas in Gautier Saturday. The annual Rotary Christmas Celebration parade was held in the heart of the city.
Excitement echoed through the air for the big Christmas kickoff extravaganza. Despite the cold weather, folks lined the streets to watch the holiday parade pass.
"It just one of those things everyone looks forward to here in Gautier," said parade organizer Charles Simpson.
"In the south we love a great parade and this just gives us a reason to have one."
As the parade rolled along Highway 90 it was filled with marching bands, dance groups and Christmas floats throwing candy, beads and much more.
"Christmas is a good time of the year for giving and sharing," one parade goer said.
Many people seemed to be having a blast watching the parade pass. While some danced to the Christmas tunes, others focused on getting their hands on the goodies.
"We just love coming out here to do it as a family. I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas," a parade goer said.
What is a Christmas parade without Santa Clause?
Saturday, Santa ditched the sleigh for a big red fire truck. Gautier's Rotary Club sponsored the holiday parade, and each year they say it gets better and better.
"We just like giving back and we love to volunteer. Rotary's motto is services above self and that's what Rotarians do," organizer Anna Simpson said.
The Rotarians hope to provide the same Christmas cheer next year.
"You have to bring the Christmas cheer. This is what makes them jolly for the rest of the month. Start them off with a smile."
This is the 16th year the Rotary Club has sponsored the Christmas Parade in Gautier.