Santa Claus Parade

Join in the excitement of the BWG Santa Claus Parade, as it brings the holiday spirit to life each year!

Date: Saturday, November 18, 2023
Time: 6:30-8:00 pm ​

Event Details

BWG's greatest holiday tradition brings friends and families together as local businesses, service groups, clubs, entertainers and more bring the holiday spirit to life. The parade attracts thousands of spectators each year to enjoy the show under the stars. The parade features numerous diverse floats from the community beginning at Bradford High School and travelling east on Holland Street, finishing at the Bradford & District Memorial Community Centre.

Parade Entry Applications


Application deadline: November 1, 2023 (max. 50 entries accepted) 

*There will be a mandatory Parade Safety Meeting on  Wednesday, November 8, 2023 from 7:00-8:00pm  at the BWG Leisure Centre (471 West Park Ave.). You will receive your float # and important information regarding the route, float staging and safety information. 

General Parade Application Information
  • At the Parade Safety Meeting you will be provided with information including your float #, float drop-off times and locations and other staging details.
  • For the entertainment and enjoyment of those watching the parade, all parade participants (parents included, if they are walking with their children) must be dressed in appropriate Christmas attire or uniforms.
  • Please make sure all participants (drivers too!) act, dress and behave appropriate to the season. Smiles and waves are mandatory! Please remember the BWG Santa Claus Parade is for the enjoyment of the spectators - children of all ages. Please don't disappoint - make sure your entry is festively decorated!
  • To participate in the parade you must read and agree to the Float Rules & Safety Information, and complete the online float application form. Once your application has been approved by the committee you will receive an acceptance e-mail.
  • The parade will start at 6:30pm on Professor Day Drive in front of Bradford District High School. The parade route will travel south on Professor Day Drive to Holland Street, east along Holland Street until Simcoe Road, and finally south on Simcoe Road ending at the Bradford & District Community Centre.
Float Requirements
  • All entries must relate to the holiday season and should be lit with a minimum of 500 lights, and be designed to ensure safety and reliability; as it is a night-time parade.
  • No entry may depict Santa Claus and/or Mrs. Claus or Santa's float. Violation of this rule will result in expulsion from the parade.
  • No entry shall exceed 13 feet in height.
  • No entry may depict anything political, controversial or otherwise offensive.
  • All entries, commercial & non-commercial are to keep their advertising to a minimum.
  • No entry may distribute literature, pamphlets, leaflets, brochures, flyers or any other written or printed material to the spectators of the parade.
  • Entries must be entertaining to a family audience.
  • Music is strongly encouraged. Please play Christmas music only.
  • All vehicles must be in good mechanical condition and properly serviced prior to the parade.
  • Provisions for emergency towing must be available on all motorized entries.
  • Antique vehicles are permitted as a mode of transportation for invited guests or as part of an entry.
  • Automobiles are restricted to a mode of transportation for invited guests; dignitaries etc. and are not acceptable as a sole entry.
  • SUV's, pick-up trucks and flatbed cabs are restricted to being a towing unit only and should be decorated to match the float/entry they are towing.
Safety Information
  • No material (including candy) may be thrown from any entry. It must be distributed by hand along the edge of the parade route. Children will dart into the street for thrown items and could be injured very easily.
  • Any entry caught throwing candy or otherwise breach of this rule may be required to exit the parade immediately and excluded from any future parades.
  • All fuel tanks should be topped off just prior to the parade. Any type of fuel storage receptacle other than original equipment will not be allowed on any parade entry.
  • All motorized vehicles must carry a fire extinguisher and first aid kit.
  • Participants in the parade shall not be consuming or giving the impression of consuming alcoholic beverages, and shall refrain from smoking during their participation in the parade.
 Staging / Parade Route / De-Staging:
  • It has been requested by South Simcoe Police services that no riders be on their float or entry in transit to the staging area. Town by-laws prohibit this and all riders will be asked to get off their entry if they are caught violating this rule.
  • Riders will only be allowed to ride on their float/entry from the staging area, along the parade route to the final destination (Bradford & District Memorial Community Centre).
  • All participants shall not mount or dismount from the floats or other entries along the parade route (with the exception of an emergency).
  • Once an entry has reached the Bradford & District Memorial Community Centre all riders on the float/entry must get off their entry.
  • All float/entry participants will be able to use the shuttle bus to transport them from the Bradford & District Memorial Community Centre back to Bradford District High School.
  • All float/entry riders should make arrangements beforehand to have someone pick them up either at the Bradford & District Memorial Community Centre or the Bradford District High School.
  • Volunteers will be at the high school as early as 2 pm.
  • The high school will be open as of 3 pm for use of the facilities.
  • Main staging drop off time is between 3 pm to 5 pm. Please try not to leave your arrival until 5 pm as the high school parking lot becomes very busy.
  • Drivers are asked to approach the staging area from Holland Street West onto Professor Day Drive.
  • Please pull into the inside lane and look for the volunteers with the red hats standing on the median to check in and for further directions.
  • Please ensure you have the number of your float prominently displayed in on the driver's side of the float. This number is to help the volunteers position you in the staging area.
  • It is your responsibility to make sure all of your participants know the name and number of your float.
  • Special Request: Once the float has dropped off all riders at the Bradford & District Memorial Community Centre, we ask that the drivers please go past the Seniors home on the 6th Line with the lights and music playing so the residents have a chance to enjoy the parade too.
 Parade Marshal Information:
  • All instructions of the parade marshals and their officials must be obeyed. Failure to do so may result in removal from the parade and may jeopardize participation in future parades.
  • Parade marshals and officials reserve the right to remove any entry, at any time, whether as a result of concerns for safety or interference with parade's progress.

Float Information

First time building a float? Looking for direction? 
Take a look at our Float Making Guide

New this year, the Town of BWG Council will be awarding prizes for:

  1. The Mayor's Trophy (best overall)
  2. Best Commercial/Business Float
  3. Best Non-Profit float
Floats will be judged based on the following:
  • Effort: Adherence to the rules, use of space, organization and planning
  • Quality: Adherence to theme, effective presentation, use of decor, lights and music
  • Appearance and Originality: Style, presentation, design, overall appearance, and originality
Judging will begin promptly at 5:00pm. In order to be included in judging your float must be in place, fully lit and decorated with all participants by 5:00pm. 

Parade Information

Parade Route & Road Closures 
Santa Claus Parade Route

Parade Route:

Starting at Bradford & District High School the parade route will travel south on Professor Day Drive to Holland Street, east along Holland Street until Simcoe Road, and finally south on Simcoe Road ending at the Bradford & District Community Centre.

Road Closures:

The temporary road closure for Saturday November 18, 2023 from 4:00pm at the following locations, for the Bradford West Gwillimbury Santa Claus Parade;
  • Professor Day Drive (south bound lanes), from Northgate Drive to Holland Street
The temporary road closure for Saturday November 18, 2023 from 5:30-9:00pm at the following locations, for the Bradford West Gwillimbury Santa Claus Parade;
  • Professor Day Drive, from Northgate Drive to Holland Street
  • Holland Street, from Professor Day Drive to Simcoe Road
  • Simcoe Road, from Holland Street to Edward Street
Parade Etiquette
Please follow the Santa Claus Parade Protocols:
  • Respect parade marshals - they are there to keep you and your family safe during this fun and festive event
  • Be considerate and allow families with children to sit in front
  • Don’t smoke
  • Wear your rain gear; umbrellas block the view
  • Don’t climb on or sit atop of anything belonging to others
Distance & Timelines
  • The parade distance is approx. 2km in length.
  • The parade duration is approximately 60 to 90 minutes from when the first float starts off (6:30 pm) until it reaches its destination (125 Simcoe Road).
Where to Watch 
  • All locations will have a great view of the parade. Show up early to find a great spot. Please remember to choose a safe location off of the road as some floats and bands will use the entire width of the road.
  • All areas along the route are wheelchair accessible.
The South Simcoe Police will have additional police officers out to help with security. If you are caught disrupting the parade in any way or found in a dangerous area, you are subject to possible removal from the premise. Please respect the officers to ensure a safe and fun event for all in attendance.
Letters to Santa
We will be collecting your letters to Santa Claus during the parade. Remember to put your return address on the envelope so that Santa can write you back.
Please address all letters to:
c/o The North Pole
What to Wear
  • Dress in layers to keep warm
  • Wear fleece, waterproof jackets and comfortable waterproof footwear
  • Wear a hat or earmuffs
  • Please remember that umbrellas will block the view of others in attendance
 Parking & Transportation
 There will be NO parking permitted on the parade route during the event. Any cars found parked along the route will be towed at the owners expense. The streets will open again following the parade. There will be a shuttle bus for transportation between the Bradford & District Community Centre and Bradford District High School for parade participants once the roads are re-opened.
Hawkers & Peddlers
As per By-law 2014-70, a Business License must be obtained by every Hawker or Peddler. 
Hawkers and Peddlers License Application
Applications and questions can be directed to the Licensing Officer

Thank-you to our 2023 Event Sponsors

Osborne Goodard Logo
Great Gulf logo
DG Group logo
Bayview Wellington logo
South Simcoe Freight logo

Address: Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury, 100 Dissette St., Unit 7&8, Bradford, ON, L3Z 2A7

Phone: 905-775-5366, Send an Email

By GHD Digital