Labor Day has passed. Summer is over. Christmas is right around the corner.
It might not feel like Christmas, but the city of Waukesha Chamber of Commerce is hard at work planning the 2014 Waukesha Christmas Parade and recently announced the theme for the annual event.
The theme of this year's parade, scheduled for 4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 23, in downtown Waukesha, is "Visions of Christmas Yet to Come."
"For many years, the parade theme has asked entrants to reflect on Christmases of the past," Chamber Executive Director Jim Hahn said. "But the chamber of commerce wanted to acknowledge the Wisconsin tradition of also looking forward."
The theme was inspired by the final ghost appearing in Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" and asks parade participants to imagine what he might have shown Ebenezer Scrooge if his future reflected Waukesha's spirit of innovation.
Parade participants are encouraged to incorporate the theme into their unit themes and decorations.
"The parade committee is hoping to see some truly inventive entries this year," Hahn said. "Whether it's a hologram of the Bethlehem manger, a jet-pack flying Santa or a robotic gift wrapping machine — the possibilities are endless."
Parade organizers have already begun meeting, and preliminary plans include judging floats in two divisions: community groups and business entrants, as well as large and small performance unit divisions, which the chamber added last year.
The parade route will be the same as Ghosts of Christmas' past, beginning at White Rock Avenue and Main Street and concluding at Wisconsin Avenue and Maple Avenue.
In addition to 100 volunteers being recruited to assist on the day of the parade, local residents who want to help in planning the event are encouraged to contact the chamber offices at 802 N. Grand Ave. or by calling (262) 391-0661. Applications for parade participants are available online at www.parade.waukeshaworks.com.