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Record high temp get holiday shopping off to hot start

Staff photo by Fritz Busch The Cathedral High School Sonics Dance Team show their skills.

NEW ULM — The 34th New Ulm Parade of Lights drew a massive crowd Friday during record-breaking high temperatures.

Temperatures in New Ulm reached 55 degrees Friday, according to National Weather Service observer Victor Roepke. This was a record high in New Ulm for Nov. 25th. The previous high temperature for this date was 53, set in 1984.

By the time the parade started, the temperature had dropped to the mid-40s, but the crowds did not seem to mind.

This year’s parade saw over 60 units travel up Minnesota Street. The parade was the capper after a festive Black Friday morning and afternoon.

Holiday shoppers were out in full force Friday. Downtown New Ulm had heavy foot traffic before the Parade of Lights.

Staff photo by Fritz Busch Santa Claus waves to a huge crowd at the end of the Parade of Lights on Minnesota Street Friday

Black Friday typically inspires a shopping surge, but the unusually warm weather likely brought even more people outside.

Before the parade of lights, special holiday themed events happened throughout town. The Brown County Historical Society museum held its annual holiday open house. Visitors could visit the museum for free and see the holiday display. This year’s display includes vintage toys from past generations. This included everything from old dolls to modern action figures.

The museum also had the Colombian Mammoth tusk on display. The Minnesota Science Museum spent two years working to restore the tusk, which was found in a New Ulm gravel pit. It was returned two weeks ago and is now on display on the main floor of the BCHS museum.

The 7th Annual Holly Days craft and vendor event was held at the Best Western Plus. There were around 35 vendors selling crafts from baked goods and mittens to jewelry and gemstones. All kids attending received an elf hat they could decorate.

Santa and Mrs. Claus were also in attendance. Santa confirmed that this year’s group of kids had been really good. The most requested presents this year were Nerf toys and Barbie dolls. Santa and Mrs. Claus will return to the Holly Days craft and vendor event on Saturday.

Staff photo by Clay Schuldt Eight month old Ashton Cole tries tries on an elf hat during the Holly Days with Santa craft show.

Several holiday-themed events will continue Saturday. The New Ulm Chamber is promoting Small Business Saturday. Several local businesses are participating, offering special discounts.

Staff photo by Clay Schuldt A rare beardless Santa is pulled in a wagon sleigh through the Parade of Lights.

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