Organizers: Carrousel Parade may "come to an end" from economy - | WBTV Charlotte

Organizers: Carrousel Parade may "come to an end" from economy


Just a year after it was named one of the best parades in America, the Carolinas' Carrousel Parade may be canceled if a major sponsor doesn't step in.

According to a release sent out on Wednesday, Carolinas' Carrousel, Inc. only has until the end of April to secure new sponsors in order for the parade to take place in its current form this year.

"Our title sponsorship contract with Belk expired after last year's parade," said Jeff Collins, president of the board of Carolinas' Carrousel.

"Although we do have the valuable support of long-standing sponsors, such as Autobell Car Wash, Piedmont Natural Gas, and CPI Security Systems, without another major sponsor or sponsors we will not have the financial means to produce the parade and this regional holiday tradition will come to an end."

The organization hopes to continue with its Carrousel Scholarship Program, which has granted college scholarships to hundreds of outstanding high school seniors since 1967.

Carolinas' Carrousel, Inc. has produced the annual Carrousel Parade since 1947.

The parade, which celebrated its 65th anniversary last year, was included in US News & World Report's 2012 list of America's Best Thanksgiving Day Parades.

"Carrousel has been an important tradition in this region for decades," said Collins. "Unfortunately, times have changed and corporate and community support for our efforts is not what it once was. We are very disappointed that the parade and the scholarship program may not go on, but without an influx of funds we simply cannot continue."

Corporations, organizations or individuals who want to offer their support to the Carrousel Parade and the Carrousel Scholarship Program through sponsorships or financial contributions to Carolinas' Carrousel, Inc. should contact the Carrousel office at 704-525-0250 or as soon as possible.

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