According to Winona Main Street director Sue Stidham, this year's theme is "Rocking Around the Christmas Tree."
"Right now, we are working to get as many bands in the parade as possible," Stidham said. "We have Holmes Community College and the Winona Pride bands so far, and we are hoping to bring back Mississippi Valley State [University]."
Stidham said the parade committee are putting special emphasis on float entries and are encouraging businesses, civic groups, and individuals to build floats for the parade. She said they are also inviting other Montgomery County municipalities to participate in this year's parade.
"We have invited Duck Hill and Kilmichael's volunteer fire departments to come and local officials as well," Stidham said.
Just as last year, the parade will begin at the Montgomery County Courthouse on Summit Street, cross over Applegate Street, and continue to Front Street. Floats will exit Front Street on Magnolia Street.
Stidham said with last year's success, the singing Christmas tree will be back, however it will perform prior to the parade on Front Street near the main stage in front of the Depot.
A fireworks display over downtown Winona will conclude the event.
Stidham said the parade committee meets every two weeks, and volunteers are always welcome to attend.
Volunteer June Williams said the annual chili cook-off will be held from 12 until 5 p.m. in the parking lot at the corner of Quitman and Summit Streets.
Chili must be cooked on site, and no pre-packaged chili mix is allowed. Cash prizes in the amount of $75, $50, and $25 will be awarded to the first, second, and third place winners, respectively.
After judging, chili contestants can sell their chili to parade patrons.
Chili cook-off entry forms can be found at www.winonatimes.com.
For more information about the Christmas parade, please contact parade chairman B.B. Hemphill at 662-283-4565.