Inside Armonk got the inside scoop on the beloved Frosty Day Parade scheduled to take place this year on Sunday, November 25 in downtown Armonk. We spoke with Armonk resident Robby Morris, the President of Friends of Frosty, Inc., the non-profit organization in charge of planning the day’s events who provided us with helpful information so you can maximize your fun this year.
1. It’s more than just the parade–it’s many hours of fun-filled activities. The event starts at 12:30 pm with three hours of free activities, rides, treats and entertainment until 3:30 pm. Then there is entertainment on Main Street just prior to the 4:00 pm parade of 40+ participants (including three trains, horse & wagon, four marching bands, antique cars and floats). Several local businesses also offer free samples and discounts throughout the day.
2. All are welcome to participate in this free event. Morris loves how inclusive the parade is and that Frosty is a non-denominational symbol of the holiday season. From the youngest Girl Scouts to senior residents at the Bristal that participate in a festive holiday themed van, Morris enjoys coordinating the 40+ local organizations that march in the parade. An insider tidbit: Morris is actually no stranger to parade life. Born and bred in New Rochelle, he actually has participated in the New Rochelle Thanksgiving Day Parade for the past 50 years as a clown and his vast experience in parades makes the event here in Armonk run flawlessly.
3. Get there early to partake in events such as Build Your Own Frosty decoration at the Hergenhan Recreation Center. “The kids love making their own Frosty yard stick decorations and holding them up during the parade.” Morris, who is a grandfather himself, understands that young kids need down time, so they have plenty of activities planned for the day if your ‘wee ones are in a need of some R & R. For example, the North Castle Public Library shows Frosty cartoons all day.
4. Hours of preparation make the day one of the most anticipated local events. Morris has a team of about 12 volunteers who meet several times a year prior to the event for this “labor of love”. They assess each year what works and what they can eliminate from the parade. This year look for new businesses such as Tauk to participate. The committee also gets to audition several of the performing acts at the parade. Morris is particularly excited about Manhattan-based band Shinbone Alley Stilt Band. They are musicians on stilts and Morris and his team carefully plan out “how to utilize our entertainment to our best ability so the musicians are stationed at various points in the village throughout the day.”
5. Memories are made here. Morris loves overhearing parents and children in town talk about where they stood during the parade. “I love it when during the summer, kids can pinpoint where they stood. It is a day that provides a warm feeling for the community and puts a smile on everyone’s face.”
This is the town’s ninth Frosty Day Parade. Originally, it was a day when merchants stayed open late and was more of a winter walk. They revamped the day and added several activities nine years ago as a way to pay homage to Steve Nelson, the long-time Armonk resident who was the lyricist of the popular holiday song “Frosty the Snowman”.
The parade culminates when Frosty makes his appearance and invites all the parade spectators to “catch-me-if-you-can” with many of the attendees following him to Wampus Brook Park at 4:30 pm for a Sing-a-long and the Holiday Lighting Ceremony at the gazebo.
“It has literally turned into a five-hour free Winter Festival which would rival any Disney production,” sums up Morris.