52nd Annual Watts Christmas Parade Instills Christmas Cheer

 Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA 43) waves at the crowds during the 52nd Annual Watts Christmas Parade on Saturday, December 2, 2017.

Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA 43) waves at the crowds during the 52nd Annual Watts Christmas Parade on Saturday, December 2, 2017.

A Community Tradition Continues

The Watts community welcomed the 52nd Annual Watts Parade Saturday with local organizations and dignitaries greeting area residents along the parade route, marking the beginning of the holiday season.

Hosted by the Edna Aliewine Foundation, currently under the leadership of the founder's daughter Paula Aliewine, the procession for the Watts Parade began in front of the Watts Labor Community Action Center at noon. Parade participants including dance groups, marching bands, bike and car clubs walked, danced, marched, rode and cycled down Central Avenue ending at Markham Middle School.

"We send a message out from this community–– That we're alive, we're well, we're working and we're going to enjoy Christmas!" said Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who was among the dignitaries participating in the parade. State Senator Steven Bradford was also present.

The parade's Grand Marshall was Watts-based R&B Soul Group, "The Sylvers". The Celebrity Marshall was singer Cherelle and serving as Gospel Marshall was Ethel Bolden.

"It gives the community a chance to participate in a most important time–– when we're celebrating Christmas," expressed Congresswoman Waters.

 Congresswoman Waters is introduced to area volunteers.

Congresswoman Waters is introduced to area volunteers.

 Several Car Clubs participated in the 52nd Annual Watts Christmas Parade on Saturday, December 2, 2017.

Several Car Clubs participated in the 52nd Annual Watts Christmas Parade on Saturday, December 2, 2017.

 High school bands kept the festive parade celebration as they marched down Central Avenue on Saturday, December 2, 2017.

High school bands kept the festive parade celebration as they marched down Central Avenue on Saturday, December 2, 2017.

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 Patrice Royal, 2017 Miss Compton 1st Runner-Up at the 52nd Annual Watts Christmas Parade.

Patrice Royal, 2017 Miss Compton 1st Runner-Up at the 52nd Annual Watts Christmas Parade.

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Anabel Marquez