Playoffs have ripple effect on holiday events | Opinion

Fibo Quantum

So looking forward to Christmas!

Some folks were chomping at the bit to get their Christmas decor out before Thanksgiving. As soon as the Thanksgiving table was cleared and before the leftovers were reheated, more than a few folks had their lights up and flipped the switch.

Ponchatoula has glowed brightly on recent nights even before the annual official lighting ceremony, and I was not mistaken in thinking this Friday was the date scheduled.

However, folks at the Ponchatoula Chamber of Commerce tell me the date is changed from this Friday to next. The lights continue to glow at night, but the official lighting ceremony and “Sitting with Santa” on the Collinswood Museum porch will not take place until Dec. 10.

What’s more, the time of the Ponchatoula Christmas parade on Dec. 11 has been changed from 5 p.m. to 10 a.m.

Why the last-minute changes? The reason is just as exciting as the festivities: High school football playoffs.

The Green Wave is on a mighty roll, taking down opponent after opponent by wide margins – the closest score a 37-21 win over Mandeville.

We can expect the Wave (11-0) to pound Acadiana (11-2) this Friday at 7 p.m., and hometown spirit dictates that the glow in the Swamp will outshine the glow Downtown, so the lighting ceremony was pushed back.

And it’s a matter of Ponchatoula pride that the team will be in the Christmas parade on Dec. 11 so, naturally in consideration of the looming state championship game on Dec. 11, the parade time had to be moved up.

Meanwhile, a related situation is happening in Amite, where the Warriors (10-2) will be at home this Friday for the playoff game against Jonesboro-Hodge (11-2), and the Amite Christmas parade is also set for Dec. 11 at 10 a.m.

It’s a long-standing courtesy and sign of support that the chambers of commerce in the municipalities of Tangipahoa Parish try to not have similar events at the same times. The timing and scheduling of the two parades this year was unforeseen.

It’s my understanding that, on learning about their parade time change the other day, Ponchatoula Chamber staffers called every single entry in their parade, explained the situation and assured them it would be understandable if they decided to honor their commitment to be in the Amite parade instead of Ponchatoula’s.

“None of us want to have a conflicting parade date,” Billie Jo Laird told me, “but this was a last-minute change and the mayor asked us to do it.”

In addition to the parades on Dec. 11, Amite will have its Holiday Booth popups at Coach Catha Park starting at 8 a.m. and concluding with the Shop Amite / Dine Amite drawing at 4 p.m. Call 985-748-5537 or 985-517-0808 for more information. And it will be Election Day for the Amite-area hospital district tax proposition all day until 8 p.m.

It’s wonderful to have so many great local events – and great teams – to support! Geaux, Green Wave! Geaux, Warriors!

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