PHOTOS: Share Your Holiday Parade and Tree Lighting Pics

Branford's annual Holiday Parade and Tree Lighting stepped off from Branford High School Saturday night at 5 p.m. Share your pics with Patch.

The Holiday Tree Lighting and Parade is here once again. Join us along the parade route, or be apart of the parade. The parade steps off from Branford High School at 5 p.m.

Past Parade Pics

Parade History

Bill Keane November 24, 2012 at 11:49 PM
Perhaps the biggest crowd ever assembled on the Green for the Christmas Tree Lighting. Thanks to the Branford Rec. Dept., Branford Police, Firefighters, Public Works! With dozens of Van Wilgen's tractors, the Town Band, the Stony Creek Fife and Drum Corps, the antique cars, and dozens of other great floats in the parade, it was all quite spectacular. The hard work behind the fun is another example of Branford at its best.
Steve from SAAC November 25, 2012 at 08:03 AM
I agree with Bill--a simply amazing a night, and great job by Branford Parks & Rec Department, and all agencies who contributed to making it happen. I've never seen so many antique cars participate too--wow. Off the cuff I'd guess maybe a total of at least 15 or so--and at least a few who ran top down all evening--that's dedication! Going thru my photos now, and will post up a few next chance I get. Thanks again to all who made it happen and great job Branford.
Nicole Ball November 25, 2012 at 03:28 PM
Thanks for commenting guys! I am so bummed that I missed the lighting and parade this year! Family obligations took precedence! Steve, I can't wait to see your photos! I am really looking forward to them and I hope more readers share too! :) Happy Holidays Branford!
Steve from SAAC November 25, 2012 at 03:47 PM
Sorry you missed it, Nicole, though to be truthful, it was pretty darned chilly! I still can't believe that family in the open dune buggy (I am "fairly sure" something like that does not have any heat also), and then driving it all the way home again! Anyway, sevefral pre-parade staging scenes of antique autos were just added. Still to come are shots of some of the activities on the west side of BHS, where tractors, organizations, and vintage fire trucks were also getting ready to roll... My "action shots" from during the actual prade, and post-parade shots downtown were not that great, but I'll eventually add a couple of those as well...
Steve from SAAC November 25, 2012 at 03:49 PM
Oh! How about that banner shown on the side of the big black 1940s Cadillac sedan--a Columbus Day Parade apparently coming to Branford in 2013! How cool!
Steve from SAAC November 25, 2012 at 04:14 PM
As previously noted, there was a superb turnout of old cars for this parade. Several I have seen before, at Branford Festival Classic Car Cruise, and other events; a few of which I even know the owners of. Here's a list, with my best guesses on model years: '57 Tbird Convertible, black early '70s (first generation) Chevy Monte Carlo, gold '41 Cadillac Sedan, black (had a banner on the door that read: "Coming To Branford, Huge Columbus Day Parade, Sunday, October 13, 2013, Greater New Haven Columbus Day Committee") '50 or so Ford Convertible, light yellow (had banner on the door that read: "Italian-American Social Club, Branford, Est. 1932") air-cooled VW-based dune buggy, copper metalflake, "Oscelot" body (I think) '70 VW Bug Convertible, tan (mine) '80s Olds 442, black mid-'60s Ford Falcon, blue mid-'60s Plymouth Barracuda, red mid-'70s Chevy Corvette, metallic orange mid-'60s Chevy Chevelle, burgundy mid-'60s Chevy Chevelle, teal blue, hot-rodded mid-'60s Cadillac Convertible, red early '70s (first generation) Chevy Monte Carlo, blue '80s Lincoln Continental 4-door sedan, dark blue Next stop, parade staging scenes in the big west side parking lot at BHS...
Steve from SAAC November 25, 2012 at 04:43 PM
Pre-parade staging action scenes at the western side BHS parking lot just added. Tons of antique farm tractors (most, presumably from Van Wilgens?), awesome antique fire engines ('53 Maxim pumper and '37 Maxim Ladder truck, both with Branford markkings), and of course various organizations and groups getting their floats in order prior to the parade step-off (sorry I did not do a better job of photo-documenting the non-antique-machinery aspects of this event)...
Steve from SAAC November 25, 2012 at 05:02 PM
Finally some action shots were just added, showing us rolling off from BHS, and toward the Town Green. Sorry for the quality--as usual, my "consumer-quality" camera is not the best for low-light situations. Super kudos to the antique car folks who figured out how to engineer some working Christmas lights on their cars--they looked FANTASTIC! Thanks again to Branford Parks & Rec, and everyone who made the 2012 Branford Holiday Festival Parade an exciting and fun evening!!!
Steve from SAAC November 25, 2012 at 09:49 PM
I forgot to mention the very nice "medalion" participation award that we were handed as we drove out of the Branford High School parking lot--I'm assuming all antique auto drivers received one. There was a Christmas tree scene on one side, and on the back the imprinted wording: "Branford Holiday Treelighting Parade 2012 Participant." Very cool! I am also going to see what I can do to make contact with the Branford Italian-American club (heck, I am married to an Italian-American from Branford!), to try to learn more about that 2013 Columbus Day Parade in Branford--sounds very cool as well!
Nicole Ball November 26, 2012 at 12:14 AM
Hey Steve, Thanks again! I LOVE all the photos and I saw that sign about the Columbus Day Parade too! I will do my part to find out the scoop. All your details are awesome. Although it was cold, I still wish I was there. I am def. looking forward to the Stony Creek Christmas Pageant! Do you go to that? Like the parade, I have a hard time photographing the night scenes. I think you just have to be there to really get to experience how awesome it is! Anyway, thanks again! ~nicole
Dottie Packer November 26, 2012 at 01:14 PM
Yes, thank you to all who made it an enjoyable and safe event! I personally enjoyed the musical groups and the wonderful music of the holidays! So thank you to those groups and the Sin Sisters! I think more entertainment for kids would be nice.
Steve from SAAC November 26, 2012 at 04:47 PM
Thanks again Nicole--it was fun to go back thru the photos and try to add some words to go along with them. I have to think that the Italian American Club will want to get the word out about the Columbus Day Parade next year (in light of the banner displayed on the car). It appears you already have a Branford Patch contact/info page published for them: http://branford.patch.com/listings/branford-italian-american-club Pertaining to Dottie's point, I do admit to “having blinders on,” to a great extent, with my picture-taking at events like this, where antique autos are a part of the scene. I don’t even *attempt* to bring a camera to the Stony Creek Pageant! For that one, it’s great just to stroll along and take it all in (not to mention that it’s tough to take pictures with gloves on—that’s usually a fairly chilly evening, out there by the water’s edge…).
bball fan November 27, 2012 at 08:02 PM
OK, I don't want to be a party pooper, but what do these older cars have to do with a Christmas/Holiday parade? And can we somehow get a less Charlie Brown looking tree. Either a better tree or better arranging of the lights. We tend to do everything right in Branford when it comes to this civic stuff, so a better lighted tree would be awesome.
Steve from SAAC November 27, 2012 at 08:22 PM
bball: It is my understanding that anyone and everyone is invited to participate--all you have to do is sign up with Parks & Rec, and they find a spot for you in the Parade. Many, if not most of the old cars also had holiday adornments of some sort, and/or people riding/driving with holiday-themed clothing. Finally, why do any old cars participate in any parades anywhere? I guess because people enjoy them. My perspective anyway.
bball fan November 27, 2012 at 09:39 PM
OK. Maybe wayne cooke should drive his political bill board in it next year. Just stick a big red bow on it. And to be honest, I don't know why old cars are in all parades. At least in Vets day parade, most if not all the drivers are Vets.


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