Local families take part in horse-drawn carriage parade

Beth Rumsey, Staff Writer

“I thought ‘this is the coolest thing!’” exclaimed David Sams of Sunman, when he and his family first attended the Horse-Drawn Carriage Parade in Lebanon, OH, three years ago.

“It’s something else when you see all the Clydesdales pulling the carriages,” said wife Amy. The following year, David and Amy with their son Dustin, returned to participate in the parade. Ten-year-old Rascal, their miniature pony, pulls the decorated and lighted wagon along the parade route past thousands of spectators. The Sams’ wagon was manufactured in Osgood nearly 40 years ago by the Comer Wagon Works.

John Landers, also of Sunman, has participated in the parade since 1993. His Clydesdale, Rocket, pulls a buggy made in Cincinnati in the 1880’s by the Anchor Carriage Company. Rocket stands taller than the buggy, according to Landers. “I just like to take it out and show it to the people,” said Landers.
More than 100 authentic antique carriages are pulled by all types of horses, from miniatures to Clydesdales, along 11 blocks in downtown Lebanon. The carriages and horses are decorated for the holiday, with some of the drivers wearing period clothing.

According to the Lebanon Chamber of Commerce, more than 80,000 attend the parade each year. The parade begins at 1:00 p.m. and again at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 1. Spectators hold lit candles during the second parade, casting a holiday glow. Strolling musicians and entertainers, as well as shopping at the specialty shops and craft booths, add to the fun.

The Historic Lebanon Horse-drawn Carriage Parade and Christmas Festival is held each year the first Saturday in December. “I love the parade,” said Dustin Sams. “I don’t want to miss it!”

Lebanon is located in Warren County, Ohio. For more information, contact the Lebanon Chamber of Commerce at 513-932-1100 or visit their website at www.lebanonchamber.org.

ABOVE: Pictured with Rascal, their miniature pony. David and son, Dustin Sams, along with Tom Klump, who is a walker, gets the harness ready for the big parade in which they will participate this weekend. BELOW: John Landers is proud of his antique buggy made by the Anchor Wagon Co. in Cincinnati, OH. He uses his Clydesdale, Rocket, to pull it in the horse-drawn carriage parade in Lebanon, OH, that will take place this weekend. Both families are from the Sunman area.