Saturday, November 14, 2009

Parade Etiquette

I was lucky enough to have a Saturday night off the same night as the Cambridge Nightime Christmas Parade.

It was a great time for us, yet I feel some out there could have used these DO & DON'T lessons......

DO Allow time for travel, parking & picking out the perfect site.
The parade started at 6pm & Cambridge is about a 20 min drive from my house, plus I wanted to park somewhere that is easy to leave from. Also being the shorty that I am, I always like to get there early enough so we can both see, yet not too long before otherwise my son will get impatient & want to leave.

DON'T Arrive late, & expect to stand right in front of my perfect spot that I've been waiting at least half an hour

DO If someone does stand right in front of you be polite. In my case I said "Excuse me, I don't mind if you block my view, but please don't block my son's"

DON'T Be like the lady next to me who then yelled out "Yeah how ignorant is that!"

DO Get everything organized before the parade starts. Camera out, water bottle opened etc.

DON'T Do things you should have done while walking from the parking lot IE start yelling "Well I'd go to Tim Horton's but no one will move for me" or my fave light up your smoke in a crowd of children (I don't really care if you smoke, just don't do it in a dense crowd).

DO Dress properly. Yes it was a beautiful 15 degrees Celsius in November yesterday, but I knew that once the sun came down it would not stay that temperature. We brought toques & gloves.

DON'T Think it will be warm enough for your child to wear a sleeveless vest so that their nose can drip beside me the whole time.

DO Help the people out around you. Taking family pictures, passing money for cotton candy etc.

DON'T Keep up your conversations by trying to yell over the bands passing by

DO Cheer for Santa!

DON'T Run in front of others to get to the front (see 1st "DON'T)

DO Wait for the crowd to disperse to pack up folding blankets, folding chairs etc.

DON'T Come stomping through, pushing around all the small children in your path.

DO Ask your child what he/she enjoyed most about the parade on the trek back to the vehicle

DON'T Feel that everyone around you needs to know you're going home to enjoy a cold one!

Yes, agreed most of these items are common sense, yet these DON'Ts are actually things I witnessed last night. That's why I now refer to Common Sense, as RARE Sense (it rarely gets used in these situations). So make sure to review these few simple steps to enjoy the parade as much as he did!

For a listing of parades in your area, please visit


  1. Love your "rare sense" referral - I've often said that Common Sense is an oxymorn since it isn't very common!

  2. Good list. We, too, were at the parade. I, however, was a late-comer. I miscalculated the time it would take for me to get my two young kids ready - and then rushed out the door without our blankets, hats and mitts!! Thank goodness they had their winter jackets and hoods!! We parked ourselves on a bit of a hill and Alex was complaining of not being able to see. I said, "Sweetie, we got here very late and the other people were here before us. This is our spot. You can sit on my lap." The lady beside us told her she could go sit with her kids right up front (after asking my permission). So nice! Alex got a great view and made some new friends :)