Collard queens, fatback and Santa: Boykin Christmas Parade returns

Sunday's event marks 34th year of festivities

BY BRUCE MILLS
bruce@theitem.com
Posted 12/13/17

The Boykin Christmas Parade is scheduled for Sunday at 2 p.m. in the village of Boykin. The 2017 edition will be the 24th-annual event.

The event — which is characterized by some as possibly …

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Collard queens, fatback and Santa: Boykin Christmas Parade returns

Sunday's event marks 34th year of festivities

Posted

The Boykin Christmas Parade is scheduled for Sunday at 2 p.m. in the village of Boykin. The 2017 edition will be the 24th-annual event.

The event — which is characterized by some as possibly "the best country Christmas parade in the South" — will feature its norm of fatback, grits and collard queens. Those individuals are obviously "cross-dressers," said parade organizer Wayne Belger. And Santa Claus will again make his surprise appearance this year. At times, he's parachuted in, according to Belger.

Sunday's event has about 70 parade entries, Belger said, which is about normal.

Weather permitting, this year's parade will also include skydivers. Belger is expecting good weather Sunday though — as opposed to the last couple years — with forecast temperatures expected to be in the upper 50's with sunshine.

Given the parade's popularity and a pleasant forecast, he's also expecting a large turnout. The parade route is about a half-to-three-quarters of a mile along Old Boykin Mill Road in Kershaw County, just north of the Sumter County line on S.C. 261.

Given historically large crowds, a trolley will again be used this year to help shuttle spectators from an overflow parking area to the parade site, according to Belger.

Belger advises parade-goers to get there early Sunday. He said some individuals begin getting to the annual parade at 8 or 9 a.m. in the morning.

S.C. 261, Boykin Mill Road and Swift Creek Road will close at 1 p.m.

For more information about the parade, visit the parade's web site at www.theboykinchristmasparade.com.