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Twilight parade Saturday offers 80 plus entries
40th annual downtown Manteca patrade
parade center

Leading the longest running twilight Christmas parade in the Northern San Joaquin Valley on Saturday evening is Dave Byrd — the quintessential Manteca volunteer.

Byrd is the grand marshal for the 5 p.m. parade that will travel Yosemite Avenue from Library Park to Manteca High where it will disperse on Garfield Avenue. The judging stand will be in the 100 block of West Yosemite in front of the former Kelly Brothers Brewery.

There are a robust 85 entries for the parade featuring the theme of “A Candyland Christmas.” Santa will make his official debut by bringing up the rear aboard a Manteca Fire Department engine. The parade will take place even if it rains.

Typically 7,000 people will line Yosemite for the parade that features school bands, youth groups, JROTC units, equestrian entries, baton twirlers, classic cars, and more.

Byrd, who currently serves on the Manteca Senior Center advisory board, has a long list of community organizations he serves as a volunteer. They include the South County Crisis Center, Manteca Youth Focus, the Manteca Chamber of Commerce, Flags Over Manteca, Manteca Little League, HOPE Family Shelter, and Agape Family Services among others. In the past he also volunteered with other groups such as the now-defunct Manteca Convention & Visitors Bureau.

The parade has been staged for the past 40 years by the Manteca Chamber of Commerce.


Christmas in the Park

Friday thru Saturday

The biggest ever Christmas in the Park takes place at its new venue — Woodward Park — Friday through Sunday.

The Manteca Chamber of Commerce event staged in conjunction with the Manteca Parks and Recreation Department is Friday, Dec. 6, 5 to 9 p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 7, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sunday, Dec. 8, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The 64 vendors — most of which are offering craft items for sale — will be clustered around the group picnic shelter. Large tents will be pitched for scheduled activities including visiting with Santa. The 11 food trucks — ranging from Fagundes, Lockeford Sausage and Inner City Action to Mexican cuisine will be parked in the drop off area adjacent to the picnic area

Christmas in the Park at Woodward Park will feature a snow play area (Saturday and into Sunday), photos with Santa, carnival rides, food trucks, vendors, petting zoo, rock painting, children’s activities, a holiday cheer tent, Christmas tree decorating contest, and more.

The Penetrators Grove Band will provide live music Sunday in the holiday cheer tent. They play music from the 60s and 70s as well as rhythm and blues, classic rock, country, and blues.


To contact Dennis Wyatt, email