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A welcome cool breeze accompanied Santa when he appeared in the annual Christmas parade in George St yesterday.
Dunedin Santa Parade Trust chairman Mark Laughton said about 30,000 people watched the hour-long parade. The weather was the best in its 20-year history. Mr Laughton said he was "just thrilled".
"This is the best weather; I’ve been involved in running 20 of them, and this is the best weather we’ve ever had.
"I walked with the Santa float and heard all the little kids jumping for joy. That makes it so worthwhile," Mr Laughton said.
After thanking "all the helpers" for making the parade happen, he said: "It’s a big job, but it’s fun."
A performance by the City of Dunedin Pipe Band heralded the start of the parade, after which came an array of floats and community groups ahead of Santa and his reindeer. Cruise ship passenger Jeff Fogel, of Ambler, Pennsylvania, said it was nothing like parades at home.
"This is so much more kid-oriented and family-oriented," he said.
Parades in his home town comprised just "fire trucks and Santa", while the Dunedin event was diverse and fun.
It was great not having to rug-up against the cold at a Christmas parade, Mr Fogel said, a sentiment probably shared by Dunedin residents yesterday.
New Dunedin resident Nige Gray was impressed by the imagination on display in the various floats. Mr Gray and his wife, Claire, shifted to the city from Darwin this year with 5-year-old son Seth.