NORTH PORT — Each year, the city’s Poinsettia Parade seems to get a little larger and a little better.

This year’s event kicks off at 5 p.m. Saturday. The parade theme this year is “Diamond Jubilee” to honor North Port’s 60th anniversary.

At last count, 45 entrants are expected to step off when the parade begins.

This year special elves will march along with the parade floats and groups seeking donations of food, toys and toiletry items from onlookers. The donations will benefit families in need. Officials ask you bring such donations to either hand to the elves or drop in donation boxes at the event.

This year’s parade will begin at Sumter Boulevard and Sylvania Avenue and proceed down Sumter toward City Hall.

Shuttle service will be provided for those wishing to park at the Morgan Family Community Center, 6207 W. Price Blvd.

The festivities do not end once the parade winds up. A full blown festival will take place in the Village Green in front of City Hall and also in the building itself. There will be food vendors, a tree-lighting ceremony and interactive displays. The festival is expected to wind down around 8:30 p.m.

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