COVID 19 has affected just about everything in our lives, from sports to schools to shopping, and the Christmas season roll-out from the Missoula Downtown Association is no exception.

Program Coordinator Kalina Wickham first described how the Parade of Lights has been changed to protect those who attend.

“We decided to still have the parade but just reverse it a bit,” said Wickham. “We're offering the reverse Parade of Lights this year on Saturday December 5th from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Floats will be stationed along Campus Drive at the University of Montana and vehicles will drive through the parade. So instead of the floats driving by you, you'll drive by the floats.”

Wickham said children’s activities will also be altered to suit the COVID requirements.

“In normal years, the day begins with children's activities at close to 30 downtown businesses providing activities for kids, and these are free and low cost activities,” she said. “So to make sure that we can keep that going as well, in a COVID safe way, we pivoted to a take home activity kit model. These downtown businesses are providing these Take and Make kits, so you can do all of these fun activities at home.”

Wickham provided one specific example.

“Bathing Beauties Beads always does a beaded snowflake and they're doing that, but just to take and make that at home,” she said. “So it includes everything you need plus a little description of how to make the kit itself so it should be really fun.”

Wickham provided some contact information for parents and grandparents to get children involved in the Parade of Lights activities.

“We have a few that can be found on our website at Missoula downtown dot com slash parade dash of dash lights, and you can see all the activity kits that are available for pickup,” she said. “You can pick them up this week, but some specific ones are only available for pickup on Saturday.”

Get more details on the weekend’s downtown events here.


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