Forget Black Friday. The Christmas season does not officially arrive until Santa Claus comes to town.

Santa and Mrs. Claus arrived in style Sunday before a large crowd at Floyd’s annual Christmas Parade as more than 45 minutes of floats, bands, cars and other attractions wound their way through Locust and Main Streets on a cold, windy and sometimes rainy day.

But cold, damp weather could not dampen the enthusiasm of those who turned out for the event.

From tractors to vintage cars to floats to marching bands and even animals for adoption, the parade offered an unfolding panorama of life in the county.

People lined the streets from Mabry Funeral Home on Locust to well past Clark Gas and Oil on Main Street and cheered friends and loved ones who marched as part of the spectacle.

Parades often offer a snapshot of a community and Floyd’s holiday event is a look at the diverse people and cultures of the area.

And a sense of community is what one sees at events like the Christmas parades. Some came early for breakfast at Blue Ridge Restaurant or brunch at Oddfellas Cantina. Others came for lunch and still others stayed afterwards for dinner at Blue Ridge, Oddfellas or El Charro, Floyd’s new Mexican eatery.  Some browsed shops open for the Sunday festivities.

In the end, however, parades are for kids (young and old) and the kids provide a big part of the show, both in the parade and along the street.

Everybody, it is said, loves a parade.

So do photographers.

Especially this one.