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1950 Santa Claus Parade | Back
Simcoe's 1950 Santa Claus Parade Video
by John Cardiff
Merry Christmas! Our 1950 Simcoe Santa Claus Parade video is our way of extending season's greetings to one and all.
Today, Simcoe is known for its annual River of Lights Panorama, a marvellous celebration of the season in Simcoe's Wellington Park, which attracts visitors from miles around.
But it was not always thus. Half a century ago, before Panorama got started, Simcoe, like many other communities kicked off the holiday season with a Santa Claus Parade through its downtown.
Back then, my father, Wilfred Leask Cardiff, operated a drug store at 56 Robinson Street in downtown Simcoe, opposite the Strand Theater. On the day of the parade, he walked across the street and shot this home movie of the parade. The view in the video is looking southeast on Robinson Street, toward the intersection of Kent Street, from the front of the theater.
In the fading seconds, the view changes. The camera looks west "up" Robinson Street, toward Sam Baskerville's sporting goods store -- "the store with the log front."
We recently re-discovered Dad's collection of 16-millmetre films and are in the process of having them "digitally re-mastered" (converted) to digital video for subsequent editing and processing. The 1950 Simcoe Santa Claus Parade is the first of those efforts.
It would be quite a stretch to suggest this video is anything other than our season's greetings. Still, it provides a brief glimpse at some of the fashions and styles of those times.
Our videos are merely sneak peeks -- not exhaustive treatments -- of their subject. Hopefully they will provide a touch of perspective for those who live at a distance until they can visit.
Copyright 2005-2008 John Cardiff