More than 100 horse drawn carriages will take part in the annual Lebanon Christmas Festival and Horse Drawn Carriage Parade on Dec. 6 in downtown Lebanon.
Photo: Gary Stelzer/www.todayspulse.com
Photo: Gary Stelzer/www.todayspulse.com

Holiday nostalgia beckons at these Miami Valley horse-drawn carriage parades 

As the holiday season approaches, we are reminded of the traditions that make this time all that much sweeter.

We all find ways to connect to our family members, friends, and neighbors during the holiday season, from picking out a Christmas tree to lighting the Menorah.

For many, horse-drawn carriage rides play at least a small part in our holiday merrymaking.

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So, for those who wish to capture a more nostalgic version of the holiday season, we have uncovered the most idyllic horse-drawn carriage parades in the Dayton area.

Mark your calendars:

The Downtown Piqua Holiday Horse Parade takes place on Saturday, Nov. 16 .
Photo: KEITH STOLER

🐎 Downtown Piqua Holiday Horse Parade

On Saturday, Nov. 16 in the 300 and 400 blocks of Main St. in downtown Piqua, the Downtown Piqua Holiday Horse Parade will feature a number of unique activities. From 7-8 p.m., visitors can look forward to a parade full of horse-drawn carriages decked out in an impressive lights display with Christmas banners and decorated street trees only adding to the ambiance. The parade will begin at Main and Greene Streets and will then proceed west on Greene Street to Downing, south on Downing to High, east on High to Wayne and then make the final turn onto Market Street and North on Main to Greene Street. Free. For more information about the event, visit www.mainstreetpiqua.com or call (937)-773-9355.

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The Hometown Holiday Horse Parade in Greenville takes place on Saturday, Nov. 23.

🐎 Hometown Holiday Horse Parade

Selected as the "Best of Ohio"  Parade by the readers of  Ohio Magazine, the Hometown Holiday Horse Parade in Greenville has worked hard to remain a favorite among locals and travelers alike. This year, the event takes place on Saturday, Nov, 23, with the parade kicking off at 7 p.m. The parade, featuring 90 lighted horse-drawn carriages, hitches and riders, will start at S. Broadway in downtown Greenville and loop around the circle and come back through S. Broadway again. Before the parade begins, visitors can also check out the petting zoo, local shops and restaurants, live entertainment and free pony cart rides. Free. For more information, visit www.mainstreetgreenville.org or call (937)-548-4998.

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Downtown Urbana will usher in the holiday season with its fourth annual Holiday Horse Parade on Nov. 23. CONTRIBUTED
Photo: Staff Writer

🐎 Holiday Horse Parade

On the day after Thanksgiving, Friday, Nov. 29, the Holiday Horse Parade will take place in downtown Urbana. The lighted horse parade will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Scioto Street and head west toward the Square. Aside from the Holiday Horse Parade, there is much to do in downtown Urbana on this day. Free. For more information about the event, visit www.urbanaonthesquare.com or call (937) 788-2812.

Schedule of events on Nov. 29:

• 10 a.m. - Shops begin to open 

• 3 p.m. - Street vendors and children's activities begin 

• 5 p.m. - Street carolers and carriage rides begin 

• 5:30 p.m. - Tree Lighting Ceremony at Legacy Park 

• 6:30 p.m. - Lighted Horse Parade begins 

• 7:30 p.m. - Santa Land opens at Oxner's General Store #OnTheSquare and remains open during select hours on weekends until Dec. 22nd

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Downtown Dayton is celebrating 45 years of the holiday season during the month-long Dayton Holiday Festival, presented by DP&L, which kicked off with the Grande Illumination and Dayton Children’s Parade Spectacular in Lights from 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, Nov. 24, 2017. Courthouse Square was the center of the evening, full of family entertainment. TOM GILLIAM / STAFF PHOTO
Photo: Tom Gilliam

🐎 Dayton Children’s Parade Spectacular in Lights

Immediately following the tree lighting ceremony at the Dayton Holiday Festival on Friday, Nov. 29, at approximately 8 p.m., the Dayton Children’s Parade Spectacular in Lights will dazzle festival-goers with its decorative seasonal floats, horses, drill teams and bands, and accompanying “Magic Glasses” that allow visitors to see the holiday lights in a whole new way. The parade will begin at Second and Main Streets in downtown Dayton, and loop its way through the rest of the city. Before and after the parade, visitors can check out a number of events, from the horse-drawn wagon rides to the Holiday Village. Free. For more information, visit www.downtowndayton.org or call (937) 224-1518 ext. 227.

The Golden Lamb and the Horse Drawn Carriage Parade: two of Lebanon’s most cherished traditions.
Photo: Justin McClelland

🐎 Lebanon Horse Drawn Carriage Parade & Festival

As it turns out, one of the biggest horse drawn carriage parades in the country is located in Lebanon, Ohio. This year, the Lebanon Horse Drawn Carriage Parade & Festival takes place on Saturday, Dec. 7. The festival begins at 10 a.m. with live performances by Jess Lamb, the Red Hot Dancing Queens and the Lebanon Grand Opry House, along with the arrival of Santa and Mrs. Claus at 10:30 a.m. Then, at 1 p.m., the parade, featuring dozens of decorated horse-drawn carriages, sets off at the corner of Oakwood Ave. and Broadway St. in downtown Lebanon. Free. After the parade, the festival continues with live performances by a number of local acts. For more information about the event, visit www.lebanonchamber.org.

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The Arcanum Christmas in the Village Horse Parade takes place on Dec. 14.
Photo: Brad Troutwine

🐎 Arcanum Christmas in the Village Horse Parade

Along with the help of  the Arcanum Area Community Events and Creme de la Creme Cakery, the quaint village of Arcanum will be hosting its Christmas in the Village Horse Parade and accompanying festival on Saturday, Dec. 14. from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Before the actual parade commences at 7 p.m., visitors can partake in many other events taking place in downtown Arcanum.

Schedule of events on Dec. 14:

• 11 a.m.-8 p.m.: Food trucks Umami Bites, Tin Roof Mobile Food and Creme de la Creme Cakery will be at the Arcanum Field House

• 9:30 a.m.: Little Miss & Mr. Jingle Bell Pageant at the Arcanum Field House 

• 11 a.m.-5 p.m.: Free face painting and live music at the Arcanum Field House 

• Noon-4 p.m.: Pony rides and a petting zoo at the Arcanum Field House 

• Noon-8 p.m.: Ice sculpting at the Arcanum Field House 

• 3-5 p.m.: Kids’ crafts in the Scout House 

• 5 p.m.: Candy Cane Hunt with prizes for children 10 and under in Ivester Park

The parade will begin at the Arcanum Field House, 310 N. Main St., in downtown Arcanum. Before and after the parade, visitors can look forward to free horse drawn carriage parades and bonfires throughout Ivester Park. For more information about the event, visit the event’s Facebook page

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