The sounds of holiday cheer filled downtown Saturday evening during the 51st annual Killeen Christmas Parade.
Hundreds lined the streets to get a glimpse of Santa Claus as he rolled down the parade route wishing all a merry Christmas. More than 150 floats helped Santa usher in the holiday season.
For Shelia Rodriguez and her children, Kimberly and Taylor, the parade is a holiday tradition.
“I was born in Killeen, this is something that I’ve done every year,” Rodriguez said. “I like seeing all the kids and all the schools in the parade.”
Taylor could barely contain his excitement as he waited in anticipation for Santa to pass by.
Jose and Ana Dorrez said they have been to the parade “many times.”
“We come to all the parades here,” Jose Dorrez said.
Ana Dorrez said she enjoys hearing all the different music as the parade strolls
by and catching candy.
Melanie Sanchez was at the parade for the first time with her friend, Alisha Rodriguez. She said she had high expectations.
“I’m from Puerto Rico, and there, it’s a really big thing,” Sanchez said. “I’m hoping this one is really big, too. I’m excited to see how a parade here is.”
Valerie Miller brought her son, Chandler, to the parade to see Santa.
“I’ve been to the parade several times. My son really enjoys it,” she said. “I like the whole thing. There are a lot of different things in the parade that are nice and my son really likes seeing Santa at the end of the parade.”
Dave and Brooke Udy were at the parade to watch their daughter, Gwyneth, who is in the Harker Heights Junior ROTC program.
“We have been to a lot of parades, our daughter is in Girl Scouts and several other things so usually we’re always out here to watch her,” Brooke Udy said. “I like watching the marching bands, too, and listening to the music.”
The Men of Unity collected canned goods from parade-goers along the route to donate to the Killeen Food Care Center.