By Dottie Dewberry For the WPT
MABEN — The Maben Christmas Parade rumbled and roared up Second Avenue the night of Dec. 6 with the Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Department leading the way. Headlights flashed from side to side and sirens blasted the air with shrieks announcing that Santa Claus was on his way.
Following the sheriff’s car was Maben’s own patrol car, flashing and blaring through the night: “Make way for Santa is coming.” Second Avenue and MS Hwy. 15 was lined with Maben citizenry conversing and being amazed at the rumble and roar of Christmas moving into town.
The grand marshal honors were given to the athletes of West Oktibbeha High School, who came with banners, uniforms, Santa hats and reindeer antlers, as they proudly led the parade from the new City Hall, up Second Avenue and down to Callahan’s Restaurant, where they turned right on MS Hwy. 15 and marched back up the street and finally returned to the First Baptist Church parking lot. It was a grand parade, with the theme of “Joy to the World.”
Following the grand marshals was Miss Arneshia Coffey, who has served as this year’s WOHS Homecoming queen.
The town of Maben’s float was next, and it was filled with the mayor and the town aldermen and alderwoman.
Up the street the floats moved on past the judges located at the new City Hall. First came Grove Chapel Baptist Church, and then came the St. Stephens Methodist Church float.
Driving along behind St. Stephens was Terry Helms, who just wanted to be in the parade.
The next float was the Maben Church of God of Prophecy, filled with the manger scene and many children singing carols.
Dancing along behind them was this cute little bear dressed in a State Farm Insurance costume. It was none other than Hunter McCarter.
In one of his antique cars, all decorated with lights, was Wayne Mann, representing the Hobby Shop.
The Maben Fire Department came next with Scott Helms, Nikki Lewis and Caleb Davis crammed inside the golf cart. Everyone knows Nikki never misses a parade.
Behind the Maben Fire Department was a load of children from the Masonic Family Lodge #24.
And last but not least was the big bad horn blowing fire truck with Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus on top, throwing kisses and waves to the crowd.
Back at City Hall, the judges finally decided which float won first, second and third place: first-Church of God of Prophecy, second-St. Stephens Church, third-Grove Chapel Church.
The town of Maben and the Maben Chamber of Commerce sponsor the parade each year. It can be safe to say that Christmas has arrived in Maben.