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Rugby residents enjoy socially distanced Parade of Lights

By Sue Sitter - | Dec 5, 2020

Musician Ryan Keplin announces his next song at a concert for Rugby residents following the Parade of Lights on Nov. 28.

Rugby residents masked up and lined up in socially distanced clusters along Main Avenue downtown the evening of Saturday, Nov. 28, for the annual Parade of Lights.

The parade began with a traditional procession of first response vehicles, their red, white and blue lights blinking as brightly as Christmas bulbs. Decorated floats and classic cars followed, with riders waving at the onlookers in temperatures that were relatively mild for North Dakota.

Children collected candy thrown from parade participants but looked anxiously down the street for the evening’s special guest – Santa.

Like most people, Santa faced an unexpected problem in 2020. Santa’s problem came in the form of the Grinch, who ran down the street with a bag of stolen presents. Santa walked close behind him. Through magic and gentle persuasion from the jolly man in the red suit, the Grinch saw his heart grow several sizes larger. The changed Grinch helped Santa light Rugby’s Christmas tree in Merchants Bank Square.

A drive-in concert starring Ryan Keplin followed in the City of Rugby parking lot south of the Amtrak depot. Attendees parked their cars and enjoyed tunes such as “Feliz Navidad” from the comfort of their vehicles. Keplin, billed as “The Fiddling Lefty,” sang and played his violin from a brightly lit stage built into a semi trailer. Drivers honked their horns to applaud after each festive tune.

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