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McKeesport's Salute to Santa parade set for Saturday

| Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013, 5:16 a.m.
Norma Kutscher| Daily News
White Oak Rotary Interact Club float
Norma Kutscher| Daily News
Carolers entertain from the McKeesport Recreation Board's float at the 2012 Salute to Santa parade.

Christmas is more than a month away, but the holiday spirit will fill McKeesport streets this weekend.

The city's annual Salute to Santa parade is scheduled for Saturday at 11 a.m.

It will travel Fifth Avenue to the Shop ‘n Save store. Lineup will be at the Market Street intersection at 10, 10:15 and 10:30, respectively, for the parade's three divisions.

It is presented by the city's recreation department.

“The Salute to Santa parade is a terrific tradition in McKeesport, and attended by hundreds from not only the city, but also surrounding areas,” Mayor Michael Cherepko's administrative assistant Annette James said.

The Pipeline Skaterz from Youngwood, and The Steel City Harmonizers will join traditional audience favorites such as fire trucks, K-9 officers and floats.

“The Christmas parade is one of the biggest events that takes place in the city that we look forward to each and every year,” Cherepko said. “The committee does an outstanding job. What a wonderful way to kick off the holiday season.”

Cherepko said he and his family plan to walk with city administrators and their families.

“I think most people look forward to the holidays,” Cherepko said. “I think you're going to see plenty of people up and down both sides of the street.”

State Sen. James Brewster will be grand marshal.

A children's party will follow at the Palisades. Shriner clowns will make balloon animals, and winners of the the queen and princess contest will be announced.

Cherepko will present a proclamation to the Soap Box Derby winner.

The first 500 attendees receive a free hot dog lunch.

Cherepko lauded the recreation department for the parade and party preparations.

“I am very appreciative of all the exhaustive efforts of the committee and everything they do,” said Cherepko. “The volunteers that we have are so instrumental in moving our city forward.”

James gave particular credit to Margaret O'Keson, Tom Dineen, Chuck Jarrell and Marie Domingo.

“It takes a lot of time and work to put together a successful event, and everyone's help is greatly appreciated,” James said.

Michael DiVittorio is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.

He can be reached at 412-664-9161 ext. 1965 or