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Parade of Lights to be held Nov. 28

By Sue Sitter - | Nov 21, 2020

Sue Sitter/PCT Rugby Chamber of Commerce and CVB Executive Director Laurie Odden holds a lighted star that will top a Christmas tree on the corner of Main Avenue and 2nd Street Southeast, just in time for the Parade of Lights.

The Rugby Chamber of Commerce will hold their annual Parade of Lights Saturday, Nov. 28 at 6 p.m.

Like other community events, the parade will have added measures in place to keep the public safe during the current global pandemic.

“Lineup (for participants) will start at 5:30 p.m.,” Chamber and Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director Laurie Odden said. As in years past, an evergreen tree at Merchants Bank Park on the corner of Main Avenue and Second Street Southeast will be decorated with lights for the occasion.

This year, however, a different kind of attraction will follow the parade.

“Following the Parade of Lights, we are planning to have music with Ryan Keplin and the Keplin Band from Rolette,” Odden said.

“Right now, we’re adjusting our plans,” Odden said, referring to measures put in place by Gov. Doug Burgum and North Dakota Department of Health officials Nov. 13.

“We’re going to make (the music performance) a drive-up type of event so people can stay in their cars and listen,” she noted. “We just have to get the location picked out. That could possibly change the parade route,” Odden added.

“We want the route to lead to where the music will be held,” Odden noted.

“But we want everyone to know the Parade of Lights is still happening,” she added.

“We just want everyone to enjoy themselves,” Odden said. “It’s still the holidays; we can still get out and socially distance and we’re just going to make it happen.”

Odden said Ryan Keplin had approached her during the summer to tell her about his performance, modeled after Canadian Pacific Rail’s Holiday Train.

“CP Rail has the bands just pop out of the rail cars to play some music,” Odden said. “So, Ryan told me, ‘I have this semi trailer.’ He just pops out of the trailer to play.”

“Ryan told me, ‘That’s the concept we’re going with,” Odden added. ‘We’re traveling and all we do is open our semi door and play some music.'”

“He’s very popular,” Odden said. “People are excited to be coming to listen to him. He has his own website and Keplin Fest was an event he put on at one point. I think I even saw him play at the Norsk Hostfest. He’s got quite a list of accolades.”

Odden said parade goers will be encouraged to stay in their cars to listen to the concert. “We’re going to have a music livestream on KZZJ and on our Facebook feed,” she said.

“Stay in your car,” Odden said. “It’ll be cold out anyway. We can still have fun.”

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