What began 25 years ago as a small town’s first attempt at doing something special at Christmas, has today grown into a mega production. The first Christmas in Ida Festival in 1982 had three floats, a small craft show and a children’s lunch with Santa. The agricultural community got involved, initiating a parade of lights with all sorts of farm tractors, combines, wagons and other farm implements decorated in lights for a nighttime parade.
Today Ida’s (population 4,949) has grown to include craft shows, ice and wood sculpturing, ethnic foods, international entertainment, Santa’s Zoo, ice skating, Christmas fireworks and of course, the Children’s Lunch with Santa. Even Disney has gotten involved sending in some of their recording artists and assisting in the parade.
Last year’s event attracted over 30,000 visitors and this year’s anniversary edition is expected to attract even more on the first weekend of December.
Sometimes all it takes is someone to try something different in a town. Then watch it grow!