The air was buzzing with excitement when hundreds of people gathered in downtown Dodge City for the annual Parade of Lights and Chili Cook Off on Monday, Nov. 28. This year’s festivities included chili sampling and cinnamon rolls, hot chocolate from the Salvation Army, Main Street Dodge City’s Santa House, the Q97 Snowball Drop, prize giveaways, performances from the DCHS Madrigals, the lighting of the Mayor’s Christmas Tree, and concluded with the Parade of Lights.
Nearly a dozen teams entered this year’s chili cook off. The judge’s choice awards were declared during the festivities, with first place going to Cargill, second to Arrowhead West, and third to the Ford County Sheriff’s Office. These three teams were also named as people’s choice award winners in the same order.
This year marked the start of a new tradition, the Q97 Snowball Drop. 1500 ping pong balls were dropped from a Dodge City Fire Department ladder truck onto the waiting crowd below. 210 of these balls were numbered and redeemed for coupons or gift certificates to local businesses.
The Parade of Lights and Chili Cook Off might be over, but that is just the beginning of the fun during Christmas in Dodge City. Eat breakfast with Santa at the Boot Hill Museum, enjoy sugar cookie decorating, giveaways, carriage rides, and more during Red Beard Coffee’s Winter Extravaganza, catch a Christmas Carol at the Depot Theater, and much more. Visit https://www.facebook.com/christmasindodgecity/ for more exciting events this holiday season.