Nelson Santa Parade organisers Mark Soper, left, and Huup Waagen are calling for more parade entries, with two $500 cash prizes up for grabs for the most creative entry and the float with the most participants. Photo: Kate Russell.

Join the Santa Parade and win


“Come and join the parade” is the message from the organisers of next weekend’s new and improved Nelson Santa Parade.

With a brand new route and carnival spot all sorted, all that’s needed now are more entries, with two cash prizes to be won.

“We want people to join the parade,” says parade organiser Huup Waagen. “We have 25 in the parade line-up to date ranging from bands, musical groups and community floats – but we were counting on having at least 40.”

Huup says that when he first became involved with the parade 10 years ago, there were around 60 floats.

But in the past three years the number of floats has dropped from 45 in 2014, 31 in 2015 and 29 in 2016.

“This year we want to bring new life back into the parade and we encourage people to enter their floats and join the fun.”

Huup says there are a range of floats, props and masks, owned by the Nelson Santa Parade Trust available for community organisations and businesses to use.

“It is just a matter of getting in touch,” he says.

Instead of the usual Church Steps to Trafalgar Park direction, this year the parade will start at Trafalgar Park on Sunday, 3 December, at 12pm.

It will then run down Trafalgar and Hardy Sts, finishing at Morrison Square for the Christmas Carnival at 1pm, where there will be entertainment, food, fun and, of course, Santa.

There are also two $500 cash prizes to be won for ‘Most Float Participants’ and ‘Most Creative’, and people can vote for the latter through the Nelson App.

“Shops can also get on board, so make it a fun day out with your staff,” says Huup.

Help is also appreciated on the day with traffic marshalling, balloon blowing, and distribution, and at the Christmas carnival site.

To enter a float or to help out, contact Huup on 0212694152 or go to