The Mashpee Chamber is disappointed in the decision we were forced to make to cancel the parade, but ultimately feel we made the best decision for everyone’s safety given the dangerous conditions caused by rain, sleet, and ice on the roads. The 12th Annual Mashpee Chamber Christmas Parade has been a labor of love since January of this year when more than a dozen individuals from across Mashpee’s many organizations and communities sat around a conference table to begin planning the parade together. For everyone feeling let down or disappointed, we hear you and we feel equally disappointed.
We held on to the hope that the weather would cooperate. Even when bands and floats began dropping out due to their own concerns about the weather, we continued to do what we could to keep the parade this year. However, we made a promise to our Town Officials that safety would be our number one priority in making the decision to have the parade or cancel it. We upheld that promise this afternoon. When rain turned to sleet, and the roads were no longer safe enough to allow hundreds of people to walk alongside and in between extremely large moving vehicles, we simply could not allow the possibility that anyone could be hurt because of our personal wishes to have a parade.
We understand the passion and effort that so many people put in to bring the parade together. Small businesses and non-profit organizations put in their own time, money, creativity, and effort to make heartfelt and festive floats for the parade. Local businesses generously sponsored the parade, and prepared to open their doors to participants and spectators outside of normal operating hours. Deer Crossing, South Cape Village, and Mashpee Commons all made accommodations to allow the parade to pass safely and smoothly through their plazas. The Town of Mashpee’s Department of Public Works, Mashpee Police, and Mashpee Fire and Rescue all donated time and energy to make sure the parade would be as safe and enjoyable for all. The volunteers who plan the parade all year continued organizing and preparing for the parade despite the troubling forecast. Everyone who had a hand in the parade deserves a great deal of respect and gratitude. We extend our deepest thanks to all of you.
We, as an organization, are committed to bringing our community together and supporting our business and non-profit members through events and activities like the Season of Illumination and Mashpee Chamber Christmas Parade. We will be happy to refund any float entry fees. Money raised towards this year’s parade will go towards making the 2018 Mashpee Season of Illumination more spectacular.
The Mashpee Chamber of Commerce and the Mashpee Chamber Christmas Parade Committee have not faced cancelling any of the previous 11 parades. This year, we learned a valuable lesson and will discuss the possibility for a rain/snow date for future parades.
The Mashpee Chamber of Commerce Staff and Mashpee Chamber Christmas Parade Committee wish you the most merry and bright holiday season. We look forward to next year’s parade with a new plan to deal with the issues raised.