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Lights of Lugoff sparks the holiday spirit

Posted: December 17, 2015 6:07 p.m.
Updated: December 18, 2015 1:00 a.m.
Jim Tatum/C-I

Wolfe Mechanical won Best Overall float in the show with their “Welcome to Whoville” rig.

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About 15,000 people gathered along U.S. 1 in Lugoff  the night of Dec. 12 for the eighth annual Lights of Lugoff Christmas parade.

Law enforcement closed off the parade route on U.S. 1 between Ward Road and S.C. 34. More than 70 units participated in the parade, including two high school marching bands -- the L-E High School Marching Pride and the North Central High School Silver Knights -- floats, vehicles, horses and performers.

The event kicked off with a fireworks show, then drums rolled, sirens sang, and the parade got underway.

Jadyn Sellers waved his brightly colored light saber, a popular item among many children there, happily awaiting the fireworks and the parade. Jadyen, a kindergartner at Wateree Elementary School, said his favorite part of the parade are the lights and, of course, the big guy himself, Santa Claus.

“I like the ice cream, too,” he said. 

“This was definitely the biggest turn out yet,” organizer and founder Sherri Williams said. “And it went very well -- there were no incidents, no problems, no traffic issues, just a lot of people having a wonderful time. Law enforcement did a wonderful job of making that transition work so smoothly.”

Williams and her father started the parade in 2008 as a fundraising idea for the Lugoff Optimist Club.

“My dad and I always wanted to have a Christmas parade in Lugoff -- Camden has one and Elgin has one -- and as we were both involved in the Lugoff Optimist Club, we decided to start it as a fundraiser. We were hoping it would catch on and it did -- it has become a tradition for a lot of families in Lugoff.”

Williams said the nice weather was certainly a factor for the large turnout, but also pointed out the efforts all the entrants put into it will undoubtedly bring the crowds back next year.

“Everybody did such a great job,” she said. “We’re looking forward to seeing everyone back next year, so mark your calendars.” 

This year’s float winners are:

• Best Overall: Wolfe Mechanical

• Frank Rabon Spirit Award: Spirit Atheletics 

• Best Use of Lights: SC Rep. Laurie Slade Funderburk

• Best School: Mount Olivet Christian School

• Best Church: Sandhill Heights Baptist Church

• Best Civic Group: Cub Scouts Pack 924

•Performance Award: Patterson School of Dance 

• Rookie of the Year Award: Lugoff Bus Drivers

• Optimists Choice Award: DJ Howie D

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