West Allis - Like the Harleys coming back to Milwaukee, Allis-Chalmers tractors will return home to West Allis on Saturday, proudly rolling down Greenfield Avenue while pulling floats in the West Allis Christmas parade.
"It'll be nice to see," said Don Falk, parade chairman for the grassroots West Allis Community Parade Committee that for the second year is putting on the holiday tradition.
The parade will step off at 4:45 p.m. Saturday from 81st Street, heading east on Greenfield Avenue to 66th Street. It will be the climax of a daylong celebration known as Christmas on the Avenu,e which will include the city tree-lighting ceremony marking the official start to the holiday season locally.
Besides the tractors homecoming, parade viewers can watch for other new features, including a veterans float. Whether veterans are on active duty or not, they and their families will be welcome to ride the float and be honored.
The Brewers Sausages will join the West Allis parade for the first time. So will the Basset Buddies, a contingent of 20 cute Basset hounds looking for homes.
Also, the three young artists who won the West Allis Business Improvement District citywide coloring contest will wave at the crowds from their own float this year. Out of the hundreds of entries submitted, Aria Kuenzli a kindergartner at Madison Elementary School, Essie Lamott, a second-grader at Jefferson Elementary School, and Natalie Musack, a fourth-grader at Woodrow Wilson Elementary School, were the winners in their age categories. The contest was for children in kindergarten through fourth grade.
Also new this year will be a rolling food drive. Members of the West Allis Youth Commission will walk the route accepting donations that will go to local food pantries.
And providing the Christmas music along Greenfield Avenue will be bands, accompanied by pom squads from West Allis Central and Nathan Hale high schools and from Lincoln, West Milwaukee and Frank Lloyd Wright intermediate schools along with other bands and dancers.
And, of course, Santa will glide grandly down the avenue at the end of the parade.
- Jane Ford-Stewart
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