Michelle Wright, Main Street manager, said that Saturday likely drew 4,000 or more people from throughout the area, the most ever in recent memory for Christmas in Beeville.
“We had a lot of people from out of town,” she said. “We had a ton of people out there.”
And for those who flocked to the city, the lines were the first indication that the city’s population swelled by a third.
“The carriage rides had people lined up down the block,” Wright said.
“The snow slides had people lined up way back.
“We had a long line of people at the Winter Wonderland. The downtown merchants even stayed very busy.”
For those just wanting some good, clean, cold, winter fun, roughly 40,000 pounds of snow was brought downtown for the children to play.
“The kids loved the snow. People had a great time throwing snowballs,” Wright said. “I think it is an experience they will remember for the rest of their lives.
“The thing I loved about it was I saw a lot of dads and moms coming out. It was an event that the whole family could come out and enjoy.”
That evening, a lighted parade wound through downtown to the cheers of a crowd, the likes of which could be described as unprecedented.
“It was packed,” Wright said. “The parade was so thick that people were covering the sidewalks all the way down.
“It just keeps getting bigger and bigger every year.
“Most all of (the parade entries) besides the fire trucks and bands were floats.”
“We just had a ton of entries.”
Wright was still excited Tuesday as she looked back on the success of the festival.
“From my perspective as the Main Street manager, I was really delighted to see children having such a great time but also delighted to see the efforts of the revitalization actually working,” she said. “We are seeing such growth in the downtown.”
Wright reminded that for those who missed Santa’s Winter Wonderland, the shops will remain open Friday through Sunday from noon until 6 p.m. through Dec. 18.
“This is all just to bring foot traffic to the downtown district and to our community and to do something that families can enjoy together in our community,” Wright said.