McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

December 7, 2012

Thousands watch parade

Northgate Baptist Church takes first place

By MJ Brickey
Staff Writer

McALESTER — It was Northgate Baptist Church’s float that won the first-place prize of $300 carrying a band playing Christmas tunes and church members as thousands flooded downtown McAlester Thursday night to watch McAlester’s annual Christmas parade.

Judges Tanaye Harvanek, Kevin Priddle, Karl and Kathy Scifres, and Jerry Lynn Wilson gave the second-place prize of $200 to Pride in McAlester and the $100 third-place prize to Pittsburg County OSU Alumni Association who had Pistol Pete to take pictures and sign autographs with after the parade.

Although it was very hard to tell, Pride in McAlester’s float was made up from completely recycled materials and trash. The float adorned a large Christmas tree with lights was comprised entirely of recycled pop bottles.

There were motorcycle clubs and car clubs, dance studios doing their routines and at the very end of the parade was a long line of fire trucks and emergency vehicles with all their lights and sirens on, ushering in Santa who was carried by a McAlester Fire Department ladder truck driven by Lt. Benny Brooks.

A strong performance was given by the McAlester High School Marching band and the McAlester High School Girls Basketball team released thousands of bubbles from a bubble machine in the bed of the truck that pulled their float.

Twin brothers Richard and Ryan Richey, 9, and their little sister Iris, 8, who were accompanied by their mother Linda Fineberg, enjoyed their first McAlester Christmas parade saying they just moved to McAlester and look forward to living here and making new friends.

The theme this year was Victorian however very few entries went with the theme.

Contact MJ Brickey by email at