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The annual parade returns to Reston Town Center this Friday (courtesy TAA Public Relations)

Reston Town Center’s holiday parade is set for this Friday (Nov. 25), kicking off a series of holiday events for the season.

The annual parade, now in its 31st year, will march down Market Street at 11 a.m.

At the conclusion of the half-mile-long parade, Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus will arrive on a horse-drawn carriage. The event also includes balloons, entertainment, and marching bands.

Following the parade, the couple will be on hand for the town center’s annual Christmas tree lighting at 6 p.m.

The parade is sponsored by Reston Town Center, Reston Community Center and Reston Town Center Association.

A character meet and greet is slated for 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. at Fountain Square. Mini-train rides are scheduled for 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the pavilion. Horse-drawn carriage rides take place between 6-10 p.m. at the pavilion as well.

Parking is free in all garages on Friday.

As in previous years defined by the pandemic, parade bells will not be distributed.

“We hope to continue this popular tradition in the coming years when social distancing is not an issue,” event organizers said.

The parade has once again been nominated for USA Today’s annual Readers’ choice awards for the best holiday parades in the country.

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