Last Saturday morning, large crowds lined both sides of Congress Avenue to watch the annual Chuy’s Christmas Parade. Continuing a tradition started 25 years ago, toys were collected for the Operation Blue Santa Program. About 30 minutes after starting, the entire parade was stopped while children piled up their toy donations on vehicles that were scattered throughout the lineup.
Without question, the highlight of Saturday’s parade was the giant balloons: the Coca-Cola Polar Bear, three Angry Birds, Frosty the Snowman, and Curious George. The balloons were tethered low to the ground, but negotiating them around stop lights, trees, and poles was still challenging. Children standing near me chanted, “Spin! Spin!” when a balloon crew approached. To everyone’s delight, the volunteer handlers spun them around in a circle…without getting too many strings crossed.
Austin Fire Department including chief Rhoda Mae Kerr