Local News

Christmas, Dogwood Festival Parades Cancelled in Fayetteville

Posted November 10, 1999

— Two traditional events are ending, at least for now, in Fayetteville.

The city's annual Christmas parade will not be held this holiday season.

For years, the parade was organized by theFayetteville Partnership. When the downtown organization stopped sponsoring the parade two years ago, the city stepped in on a temporary basis.

The city says it cannot continue to plan the huge undertaking, and no other group has come forward to take over.

"I'm sad, without Santa in the Christmas parade there will be no Christmas," says Rashieda Freeman, who has attended past parades.

Santa did make an early visit to the city during Thursday's Veterans Day parade.

Some groups have expressed interest in sponsoring the event next year.

It is also the end of the road for the Fayetteville Dogwood Festival parade. Festival organizers say the parade, which costs about $30,000, was too large of an expense for the non-profit group.

The change also comes after requests from residents, the city, and sponsors to shorten the event from 10 days to four.

"We're in the process of receiving permission from the city to block off the streets. So we'll have more of a street fair feel to our festival this year. We'll have lots of vendors, lots of music and lots of merchandise," says festival director Sharon Caughey.

A recent survey shows this change should make the festival more successful. andJohn McDonnell

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