Massive crowds celebrate the start of festive season at the Credit Union Christmas Pageant

  Father Christmas and the Pageant Queen greet the crowd  
Thousands of people lined the streets of Adelaide on Saturday, sharing in the magic and fun of the Credit Union Christmas Pageant - the biggest pageant of its kind in the world.

About 335,000 people – the young and young at heart – packed the 3.3km route and various vantage points across the city, while 150,000 tuned into Channel Nine’s live broadcast, to enjoy this iconic event which has been the traditional herald to the Christmas season since 1933.

This year’s theme was ‘celebrate the clown within’, with more than 250 clowns entertaining crowds along the pageant route, with thousands in the crowd wearing red noses. The pageant featured 63 floats and 15 bands plus nine walking sets, 10 dance groups, one DJ and three choirs, totalling over 2,700 participants.

Credit Union Christmas Pageant, Creative Director and Event Manager, Brian Gilbertson, said he was overwhelmed by the number of people who attended this year’s event and said it had been a huge success.

“It was fantastic to see so many people of all ages, from all walks of life, shoulder to shoulder, enjoying the day. This year’s theme, ‘celebrate the clown within’ was about encouraging people to look at life a little less seriously, with a bit of fun and laughter and it was wonderful to see so many people doing just that.”

“The Credit Union Christmas Pageant is about giving to the community and we hope that everyone who attended or watched the live telecast on Channel Nine, enjoyed the magic of the day as much as we did.”

Mr Gilbertson paid tribute to more than 3,000 volunteers, including 1,000 people who work at or are associated with People’s Choice Credit Union, Community CPS Australia, Credit Union SA and Police Credit Union, who together with the Stardust Castle and Events South Australia team, work tirelessly throughout the year and on the day to help make Saturday’s Credit Union Christmas Pageant the success that it was.

“This event is a testament to the amazing work which goes on behind the scenes through the year and on pageant day, by our dedicated team of staff and volunteers, to make it such a success.”

Highlights of this year’s pageant included six new floats, Penguins ‘R”Koool, Hansel & Gretel, Forest Fantasy, Fergus the North Pole Fire Engine, Love, Love Christmas and the mini-float, the Naughty or Nice Meter, designed by Woodside Primary School student, Sharni Tansell.

Pageant-goers can relive the magic of the day and be in the running to win a family holiday for four people to Kangaroo Island.

Take home the magic of the 2011 Credit Union Christmas Pageant on DVD and have the chance to win a Kangaroo Island family holiday with SeaLink – includes return ferry travel for a family of 4 with own car, 2 nights’ accommodation at Emu Bay Holiday Home, a National Park Family Pass and more.

Buy your DVD from credit union branches and Channel 9 Telethon for just $25 and enter your unique code online at Entries close 16 December 2011.

The Credit Union Christmas Pageant is owned and managed by the South Australian Tourism Commission on behalf of the South Australian Government and sponsored by four leading credit unions in South Australia – People’s Choice Credit Union, Community CPS Australia, Credit Union SA and Police Credit Union.
Preparations are already under way for the 80th celebration of the Credit Union Christmas Pageant, next November.

In 2012, the Credit Union Christmas Pageant will be held on Saturday, November 10 and will celebrate the 80th year of the pageant.

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