From: Darren D. MacDonald, thenorthbaybay.ca staff
STURGEON FALLS – The holiday season is in full force. People are shopping, songs are being sung and towns are parading. The most recent parading took place at the Sturgeon Falls Parade of Lights, late Friday evening. Families come from all over to flood the streets in the dead of night (which luckily enough for us, is 6pm) to have bright lights blasted into their eye. It’s a treat for kids and adults alike.
But, 4 streets over on a very snowy night, a visitor from out of town had a notably different experience. Montey Furrow had found out about the Parade of Lights over Facebook. He thought it would be quite the experience to go and watch this festive event.
“So, I show up to the downtown area, where the Facebook page said to go. Well, there’s not much to Sturgeon Falls, so I just camped at the highway. Apparently that’s really the only thing there is in that town. No one else showed up. It’s a small town, I figured this just might be the turnout,” says Furrow, “I wait and wait and wait and you know what the parade was? It was like 5 cars with flashing lights! That was it! Sturgeon Falls should have planned this more.”
Little did Furrow know that he didn’t watch the Sturgeon Falls Parade of Lights at all! Instead, he was witness to a handful of drivers, driving with their hazard lights on. There is a subset of drivers that believe when they feel uncomfortable with the road conditions, they should turn their hazard lights on. Their thought is that it will inform other drivers that they don’t know what they are doing.
“It is truly unfortunate that Mr. Furrow had that experience,” says Pierre Turcotte, local Ontario Provincial Police Officer and head organizer of the Parade of Lights, “We had a great turn out from the audience and members of the community looking to pitch in. I hate to think that he is at home, thinking that a highway with drivers who don’t know the laws of the road was all Sturgeon Falls has to offer.”
The Actual Parade of Lights
While Furrow was getting angry at bad drivers, the rest of Sturgeon Falls and surrounding community were taking in the Parade of Lights.
“It’s a good show of community,” says a parade goer, “My kid likes the float where they hand out milk and cheese.”
“It’s nice. There’s lots of floats,’ says another parade goer, “I say floats but it’s really just slow moving heavy duty vehicles and farming equipment covered in lights, honking their horns non-stop. It’s like a traffic jam scored with Christmas music.”
The 2019 Sturgeon Falls Parade of Lights was a success with kids leaving happy. Turcotte, on the other hand, has one take away from the event:
“Please don’t drive with your hazards on. Hazards are for the event of an emergency. You not feeling safe driving in the snow isn’t an emergency. If you don’t feel safe driving in the snow, then don’t drive. And it’s illegal… “