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Twinkle Light Parade brings holiday glow to Nob Hill

Come early and grab a good spot for this year’s Twinkle Light Parade in Nob Hill.

“It’s on Dec. 1 on Saturday in Nob Hill,” said Bree Ortiz, events and operations manager for the city of Albuquerque. “The parade itself will be a mile long. The parade viewing area is one mile, and it’s from Washington and it goes west to Girard, so that’s actually the viewing area. We close Central at 3 o’clock so people can go out there and grab their spot and maybe do some shopping, grab some lunch or dinner, and then grab a good spot to view the parade. The parade will start at Washington at 5:15.”

The event is larger than in past years.

“This is pretty record-breaking,” Ortiz said. “Last year, we had 109 entries, so keep in mind one entry could be like the Atrisco Heritage (High School) Marching Band is 150 band members, so that’s one. So last year we had 109. Right now, we’re at 130 and we’re at capacity and we had a wait list and we had to turn a lot of people away who didn’t have their applications in on time, which is great for us. We used to have to kind of beg people to be in the parade, so now that we’re popular we start taking applications in August, so that means we have about 4,000 people in the parade, so that includes the walkers, the dancers, float riders, drivers, everything that’s in it. We have 4,000 people in the parade. That’s a lot of people.”

There are limits on how big an entry can be, along with other requirements to be in the parade.

“There’s limitations because of the space,” Ortiz said. “There is limitations on how big an entry can be, so we limit it to six cars or less (in a car club), and walkers are unlimited, and then there is a mandatory Twinkle Light Parade class where we basically teach you how to be in the parade, how we all work together. There’s a lot of people and a lot of floats to manage, so you have to get your application in on time, get us your introduction and different things that we require and then come to the class. After that that’s when you’re confirmed into the parade. It is open to everybody, so whether you’re a family, a business, a school group, a nonprofit, anybody is welcome to apply to be in the parade.”

Everyone and everything also must twinkle.

“Everything must be twinkled. That’s kind of our theme, so if you’re a walker in the parade, you have to have twinkles,” Ortiz said. “If you’re a tow vehicle to a float, like a pickup truck, it has to be decorated. If you have horses, you have to have lights on them and the riders have to have lights, your bicycles, all the people riding on the float have to be twinkled, so there’s a lot.”

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