The 2013 Aiken Jaycees Christmas Parade will be held in early December, and the application deadline is quickly approaching.


Registration and payments to participate in the annual parade are due by Dec. 1.


Aiken Jaycees President Gina Kelly said that not only can participants send their entry forms and payments through the mail, but they can also do so online this year.


This year's theme is “A Southern Christmas,” Kelly said, and they have had a lot of parade participants sign up so far.


This year's grand marshal will be Greater Aiken Chamber of Commerce President and CEO J. David Jameson.


Kelly said the parade will be judged a little differently this year. Judges will name first through third place overall. Judges will also award the parade participant with the most Christmas spirit, a religious theme category and best band.


Kelly added that Santa will, of course, be at the parade, but with a few surprise guests, too.


“It's always a really good show,” Kelly said. “People always go above and beyond to decorate their floats. It's a good start to the Christmas season.”


The parade will take place in downtown Aiken on Dec. 8, and the lineup begins at 1 p.m. The parade starts at 2 p.m. and is free to the public.


Visit www.aikenjaycees.com for more information on the parade and to register. The cost to register is $20.


Anyone who would rather mail an application and registration fee can send it to The Aiken Jaycees, P.O. Box 707, Aiken, SC 29802.


Amy Banton is the County reporter for the Aiken Standard and has been with the publication since May 2010.