Cernansky said she enjoys having a parade in Chapel Hill and Carrboro. Though both towns are smaller than Raleigh, she is excited share the holiday spirit with the local community.
“There used to be a Chapel Hill Jaycee Chapter which was suspended,” Cernansky said. “So, we wanted to reach out to Chapel Hill and bring the parade as a service to them because there is no current Chapel Hill Jaycee Chapter, unfortunately.”
Karen Maxwell, president-elect of the Raleigh Jaycees, said she enjoys seeing the parade and happiness on people’s faces. She is more than happy to work on the holiday parade to bring joy and love to people of Chapel Hill and Carrboro this year.
“The Chapel Hill chapter of the Jaycee kind of stalled a few years ago, so we’ve been doing it for probably 10 years now,” Maxwell said. “And we are really and into it. The parade is really fun to come out.”
Maxwell said it is essential to bring love to the community, as everyone needs warmth in the cold winter and hugs from neighbors.
“To really be part of the community and to provide something, to come out and enjoy and have fun,” Maxwell said.
Maxwell looks forward to the visit from Santa Claus the most out of the whole parade. She said she likes seeing kids' smiling faces when they see him.
To Cernansky, some of the most exciting parts of the parade are the floats and Santa.
Betsy Bertram, brand manager of the Townsend Bertram & Company Adventure Outfitters, said she is excited about the upcoming candle lighting ceremony on Dec. 13 as part of Carrboro Cheer. In addition to lights, guests will also have opportunities to listen to jazz bands and have custom beer, kombucha, hot cider and hot chocolate at the event.
“All of the stores in Carr Mill are participating,” Bertram said. “We are going to be all staying open late that evening to have after-hour shopping and raffle prizes, and each store is going to have a different activity that night.”
Bertram said her store is going to have a trunk show, a waxing clinic and a performance by the Second Shift A Cappella. She hopes the event will bring the community together to celebrate the season of light.
“We believe that, as a locally owned business, it is essential that we be a space where the community can come together to celebrate, to learn and to honor the things we love in the natural world,” Bertram said.
Bertram said she wishes to bridge the gap between the local community and UNC by inviting more students to join the crowd and celebrate the holiday season.
“We hope that students will come out and participate," Bertram said. “I think part of what makes our community unique and exciting is having UNC students constantly bringing young energies and new ideas. So, I really hope you guys can come and enjoy and delight in the night.”