The Woodland Festival of Lights Parade took place along Main Street on Friday and drew hundreds of enthusiastic people after two years of cancellation of the holiday parade due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The event was created in partnership with the Historic Downtown Woodland Group, Visit Woodland, the Woodland Hoteliers Group and city officials.
Al Eby, owner of the Blue Wing Gallery and a member of the Town’s Hoteliers Group, helped organize the event, which he had wanted to host for 15 years, but never attempted to do so out of respect for the parade annual Chamber of Commerce.
“I just wanted to have something smaller and in the holiday spirit,” Eby said earlier this month. “I wanted this to be what Woodland is, and it’s a community that comes together when there’s a need.”
Festive floats on trucks, a Bobby Dazzler cow train, decorated school bus and many more roamed Main Street for about an hour to show the amount of work the organizers put into organizing the event in such a short time.
Parade attendees gathered at Heritage Plaza after the parade and enjoyed live music while waiting for the holiday tree to light up.
Woodland resident Bonnie Marie attended the parade after her son told her about it.
“I lived in Oregon and there was a truck parade, but I never got to see it,” she said. “So today it was like a blessing that I got to see it.”
Marie said her son is a music producer and hopes he can be a part of the parade the next time it takes place.
Local Astrid Foster said it was great to see so many people coming together to make the event possible.
“I think it shows why we love Woodland,” she said. “It’s a small town where everyone knows each other and we put everything into it.
She noted that there were more people at the event than she remembered being at the last holiday parade that took place before the pandemic.
The holiday festivities continued until 9 p.m. with a snow machine, a tractor ride on Main Street and more.