Santa Claus is coming to town – and he’s heading right through the heart of Belleville.
Belleville Chamber of Commerce CEO Jill Raycroft presented the message once again before city council Tuesday night on changing the Santa Claus Parade route.
The Chamber proposed it start at the fairgrounds along Bridge Street to the Bayview Mall.
The change centred around safety concerns, at loading and unloading times at Quinte Secondary School location in the past, expressed by emergency services.
Councillor Jack Miller pointed out that during the last few years of construction downtown, the parade had managed to travel the Front Street route in the downtown.
Miller said, with the Christmas trees lit in the downtown it was an opportunity for businesses to “show it off.”
Councillor Egerton Boyce moved an amended motion to have the Santa Claus Parade once again go down Front Street.
The Hastings Prince Edward School Board has changed its former position and will now allow the former Quinte Secondary School property to be used as a mustering point for the parade.
A number of councillors expressed the hope that the Downtown Business Improvement Association would make an effort to have businesses open during the Sunday evening parade in November.
Councillor Mitch Panciuk said he would like to see businesses open their stores during the parade and provide some “monetary support” as well.
City Clerk Matt MacDonald said staff will work with the Chamber, fire and police to ensure the changes will be made to the permit to allow it to happen.