Creativity, color and enthusiasm characterized Dec. 3's Christmas parades in Wampum and Ellwood City, with some marching units participating in both.

The Mohawk Warriors' majorettes, pom-pon girls, dance line, marching band, and homecoming queen, Amy Pezzulo, and Girl Scouts in reindeer antlers led the parade. Lincoln High's Blue Band brought up the rear, attended by their choreographer, Bette Baney, dressed in a knock-out white faux mink with bright red scarf, slacks and boots.

Lawrence County's Dairy Princess, Jill Byers, distributed candy from her perch in a convertible, as did Jessica Garver, Lawrence County Outstanding Young Woman of the Year.

Lawrence County Commissioners Dan Vogler and Steve Craig also gave out candy, with Craig pretending to complain that Vogler was holding up the progress of the parade by talking too much to the Syria Shrine clowns.

State Rep. Frank LaGrotta may not have been recognizable in his knitted cap if not for the sign on the side of a PT Cruiser convertible.

Helen Jackson, president of New Beaver council, represented her borough, as did Wampum Mayor Jeff Steffler did for his.

Younger spectators seemed to be thrilled by the costumed cartoon characters -- Raggedy Ann, Toy Soldier, penguins, Snoopy, Beauty and the Teapot, Donald and Daisy Duck -- as well as the dance groups: Dance Expressions, Dance Implosion and Bette Baney's Gymnastics.

The Sankey Center Stomp Team, a City Rescue Mission ministry, performed a precision drill exercise.

Louise Carroll in Jackie Nativio's gold Mustang with a huge red hat decorating the trunk and Kathy Blank on a motorized scooter represented The Ravishing Royal Damsels chapter of the Red Hat Society.

The North Country Trail representatives gave out candy and information strips encouraging residents to go to meetings to help with the portion of the national trail that goes through Wampum.

One of the most unusual floats was created by Cemex Cement Co. and was a flatbed trailer bordered with 60-pound sacks of cement and representatives hurling Frisbees into the crowd.

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