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The Big Christmas Weekend

THE Christmas Parade returns to Stranraer on Friday as the town kicks off the biggest weekend of its annual festivities.

Santa's Real Reindeer will lead the Parade, leaving Stair Park at 6 pm sharp.

From there it heads down London Road, Hanover Street, Bridge Street, Church Street, George Street, Charlotte Street, St John Street, back along Hanover Street and down Castle Street.

There the Reindeer Coral will be waiting for Rudolph and friends to have a rest, and give children the chance to see them close-up. The Reindeer will pull the sleigh with Santa and the Snow Queen, and this year Santa has brought along elves to accompany him on his journey.

The Lantern Procession will follow Santa, and anyone without one can go along to the Millennium Centre, where lantern and Glow-sticks can be bought for £3 — all proceeds go to support Stranraer’s Christmas events.

It is also time to sharpen up on Carol singing skills, as the procession will be singing all the well known carols as it makes its way through the town.

Behind the Lantern Procession will be the decorated Vehicle Parade, which promises to be bigger and more exciting than previous years.

The organisers want all vehicles and people involved to be at Stair Park by 5.30pm, so that stewards can be in the appropriate places.

There will also be fairground entertainment for the children at South Strand street, starting from mid-afternoon.

On Saturday the festivities continue, with Santa's Grotto on the Castle Green from 12 pm to 3 pm, the Blue Bombshells and Stranraer and District Pipe band will be entertaining from 1 pm onwards.

Mulled Wine and Mince pies will be conjured up from 1 pm to 2 pm on the Castle Green to get everyone into the spirit of Christmas.

The day finishes at the Millennium Centre, where a Solstice Spectacular takes place in the form of a Rock'n'Roll Christmas.

The night features the cream of local talent, showcasing young and not so young bands, headlined by Bad Reputation, and a secret santa's grotto. It promises to be a real family night out, with the bar open until midnight.

Doors open at 7.30pm, entry is £4 , and £2 for accompanied under 12s.

Police are asking motorists to be patient while the procession makes its way through town. Castle Street will be shut from 1 pm to 10 pm.

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