BY KEN LITTLE
The weather Sunday may have been more typical of Labor Day than of Christmas, but the 2012 version of the Mohawk community Christmas parade was definitely a success.
Hundreds of people, many in shirtsleeves, lined the parade route.
They saw Christmas-themed floats, classic cars, fire trucks, horses, local business operators and elected officials, along with the guest of honor.
Santa Claus did not seem out of his element in the unseasonably warm weather.
Many young parade-goers walked away with Halloween-size hauls of candy that had been liberally distributed by parade participants.
Katelin Levesque, 7, said she likes to watch marchers "spin the flags."
The West Greene High School color guard granted her wish. The West Greene High School Band also marched in the parade.
Patsy Malone, who is Katelin's grandmother, said another granddaughter, McKenzie Malone, is a West Greene color guard member.
Malone, of Midway, echoed the sentiments of many of those in attendance.
"It's beautiful! It's like summer out here," she said.
Tammy Hensley sat on a lawn chair in the bed of a pickup truck, an umbrella shielding her from the sun.
"They get a good turnout here whether it's raining or not," she said.
Johnathan Ramsey, 9, a student at Mosheim Elementary School, said he enjoys several features of the Christmas parade.
"Candy. I like it when they are throwing candy every year," Ramsey said. "I like the horses, four-wheelers and the motorcycles. I like all kinds of them."
Daniel Jones, watching the parade with his son, Cadin, and his brother, Joseph, said the parade brings everyone in Mohawk together.
"It's just the people in the community you don't see all the time," he said.
Caydon Ward, 8, of Mohawk, watched the parade with her mother, Jamea Ward, and her grandmother, Patricia Waites.
"I thought it was nice. I liked the horses," Caydon said.
The parade was sponsored by the Mohawk Ruritan Club. Carolyn Beach organized the event. Sandy Waye was one of those who assisted.
"I think it went wonderfully. Everyone seemed to be real excited," Waye said. "The weather was great, and I think this is the biggest one we ever had."
Despite the warm weather, Waye said the parade seemed to put everyone in the holiday spirit.
"It did as well as could be expected, considering it was 75 degrees," she said.
The temperature reached 71 degrees about 3 p.m. at Tri-Cities Airport, according to the National Weather Service, making Waye's statement a definite possibility.
Prizes were given to three floats before the parade began.
First-place went to the Scott and Sherry Smith family of Mohawk. Second-place was awarded to Beulah Baptist Church, and third- place went to the Kickin' It Country Line Dancers of Morristown.
The parade began on Porter Kite Road, made a left on Phillipi Road and ended on North Mohawk Road, just past the community post office.
The enthusiastic crowd was positioned along the entire route.
"We really thank everyone who turned out," Waye said.