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Rain postpones Christmas Parade till Monday, but weather-wise, it's a win-win

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ROCHESTER - Today's planned Rochester Christmas Parade has been postponed for one day due to rainy weather predicted throughout the day and into the early evening.

The "Christmas Around the World" themed event has been rescheduled for Monday with a start time of 5:30 p.m. Anyone participating in the parade is asked to show up at Spaulding High around 3:30 p.m.

Monday's weather is predicted exponentially better than today's with a mix of clouds and sun and a high near 50 degrees.

The parade comprises some 75 entries, 25 floats and four marching bands, including a bagpiper band, Claddagh Mhor, of Portland, Maine.

It is expected there may be some changes to the parade's make-up now that it is scheduled for a weekday instead of Sunday.

This year's parade, which is underwritten by Service Credit Union, will use the same route as the planned Sunday parade, starting at Spaulding High then down Wakefield and Union streets before turning onto North and South Main streets to end up and disband at the Common.

Claddagh Mhor (pronounced More) is a renowned 30-member bagpiper band from Portland. It has all toured all over New England and in Great Britain.

This year's parade grand marshals are the chamber's Citizen of the Year, Hoagy Higgins; Greg Hopkins, Noah Behrend and Jeremy Lovett of Business of the Year HBL Group LLC; and Julie Reynolds, executive director of Cornerstone VNA, Nonprofit of the Year.

Also featured in the parade are a Rochester Police honor guard, and of course, that right jolly old elf, St. Nick, himself.

Some 2,000 individuals participate in Rochester's Holiday Parade each year.

The parade also serves as a support mechanism for the Rochester Fire Department's annual Toy Bank campaign. Donations are now being sought for new, unwrapped toys and other gift items for local children in need from infant to age 14. Items may be dropped off prior to the parade at the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce office at 18 South Main Street in Rochester or at the Rochester Fire Department's downtown or Gonic stations.

For more information on the Rochester Firefighter's annual Toy Bank campaign, please contact the Rochester Fire Department at 603-335-7545.

For more information on the rescheduled parade contact the greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce at 603-332-5080 or 603-833-5458 or email events@rochesternh.org. Folks can also visit the Rochester Christmas Parade page on Facebook.

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