Time to Exhale

by Russell Swanson, Exec. Dir., VDID, Main Street Vineland

With another Christmas Parade in the books, so goes the last official major event of the year for Main Street Vineland. It’s time to exhale! A wrap-up column will follow before the year is over, but I wanted to take this chance to give a more detailed “thank you” to all those who helped in all sorts of ways to make this parade a success, in spite of extraordinary circumstances. I’ll do it in the words that I used to thank our volunteers and staff.

Wow, we did it! Thank you so much to you and all of our amazing volunteers for making our 2020 Christmas Parade one for the record books. We had 60 participants this year, which considering everything, is amazing. The parade was fantastic and the crowd did a terrific job of social distancing and wearing masks, for the most part.

Our website and Facebook page have the links where you can still go and watch the parade. Special thanks to Gia, her team from VHS and Victor and Laurie LaTorre (announcers) as well as BFA Productions, WVLT, and announcers Al Fisher and Larry Leonelli for amazing coverage, live streams, and taping of our parade this year.

ABC Action News, Channel 6, also taped the entire parade and ran a nice piece on the 10 p.m., 11 p.m., and Sunday morning news (which can be seen on our Facebook page).

Thanks also to all of our wonderful sponsors who made this possible—major sponsor Century Savings Bank, supporting sponsors Lidl and Newfield National Bank, and many others who assisted in so many ways.

A special thanks to our Associate Director Robert Scarpa for his tireless efforts and attention to details to pull this off. Thank you, also, to Mayor Fanucci who said “we are going to have a Christmas Parade” this year! We greatly appreciate all of the support from the City of Vineland from the Mayor’s office and City Council, to the police and fire departments, EMTs, Office of Emergency Management, Public Works, Recreation Commission, Electric Utility, Health Department, the Main Street Vineland Board of Directors, staff (maintenance man Wayne Joslin and volunteers, as well as others who all helped to make this event such a success.

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Despite the circumstances in which we’re living now, with COVID and the resulting cancellations, business interruptions, quarantines, and general anxieties, we made it through the year and are optimistic that better times will allow us to again build on our successes next year.

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Main Street Vineland is here to help. In the spirit of social distancing and respecting the safety of our staff, our office is currently closed to walk-in public though we are still working every day. We pass this information along to our businesses every Tuesday, in the 9 a.m. hour, on SNJ Today 99.9 POP FM, Channel 22, and on Facebook Live on facebook.com/snjtodayradio.

For more on Main Street Vineland, call our office at 856-794-8653, visit TheAve.biz—or check us out on Facebook. You can also e-mail me at rswanson@vinelandcity.org.

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On the Ave