Johnston County

Archer Lodge parade is Nov. 29

Archer Lodge traditions might be young, but they’re cherished.

In 2013, when the town’s annual Christmas parade lapsed for one year, residents let town leaders know it, Mayor Mike Gordon said.

“The response from citizens was significant,” Gordon said. “They were not happy with not having a parade. It just showed us how important the event was to people.”

Starting at 3 p.m. today (Nov. 29,) the fourth annual Archer Lodge Christmas parade will be only the second organized by town government, which took over the parade from the Archer Lodge Fire Department’s Ladies Auxiliary.

After the parade, the Archer Lodge Community Center will host its sixth annual Christmas Celebration, offering photos with Santa, $1 train rides, face painting, music and crafts. The town will light its Christmas tree at 5:30 p.m.

The parade follows a tight route, starting at the Mulhollem Farm on Buffalo Road on its way toward Town Hall. It then turns left onto Archer Lodge Road and then left onto Covered Bridge Road before ending at Barnes Store. Gordon said the route is designed to keep spectators close to the town center, with plenty of good vantage points.

“People can sit close to the parade, see their family members walking – people really enjoy it,” Gordon said. “It’s just a fun day for the family.”

The parade typically draws about two dozen entries, Gordon said, with this year’s procession expected to feature scout troops, marching bands, churches and politicians.

Little Miss Archer Lodge Melissa Stone is this year’s grand marshal.

Drew Jackson: 919-553-7234, Ext. 104; @jdrewjackson