Santa Claus — and road closures — coming to town

The annual Hamilton Santa Claus Parade starts at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, beginning at the corner of Bay Street N. and Barton Street W.

Hamilton parade begins at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday

The jolly old elf himself will be the last to appear in the Hamilton Santa Claus Parade on Saturday. (Sunnie Huang/CBC)

You better watch out, you better not cry...

Santa Claus — and road closures — are coming to town.

The annual Hamilton Santa Claus Parade starts at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, beginning at the corner of Bay Street N. and Barton Street W. 

The parade route is the same as last year, heading south on Bay Street, then east on York Blvd, before going north on James Street N and finishing at Barton St.

The parade typically lasts about an hour to 90 minutes, said parade committee chair Jim Coons. The jolly old man himself will be the last to appear.

According to the city, the following streets will be closed for the event:

  • Stuart Street will be closed between Hess Street to Bay Street from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Hess Street from Barton to Stuart will be closed from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Bay Street from Strachan Street to York Boulevard will be closed from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • York Boulevard from Bay Street to James Street will be closed from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • James Street from York Boulevard to Strachan Street will be closed from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
  • Strachan Street from James Street to Bay Street will be closed from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. 
Various roads will be closed in Hamilton during Saturday's Santa parade. (City of Hamilton)

There are 55 entries in this year's parade, including nine bands, said the committee's marketing coordinator. If the weather holds up, Coon said he's expecting 40 to 60,000 people to attend.

The annual Hamilton parade is put on by a team of volunteers putting in a collective 2,500 hours, he said.

But Saturday is just the start of the season, Coons said, as the Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus and Frosty floats will soon be on the road and in other parades.

Coons said the committee leases their floats to other towns to help fund the Hamilton event, which is also supported by the city.

This year, at least two of their floats will be in nine other municipalities, he said.