Holiday Parade Rules

We expect everyone participating in the parade to know and abide by all parade rules.  Please provide a copy of the rules and maps for all participants in your entry.  The person who signed the entry form is responsible for this.  We will make your signed application available to any person in your group who states they did not have access to the rules.

Entries must be mailed to Tony Amaral, City of Modesto Parks, Recreation and Neighborhoods Department, P.O. Box 642, Modesto, CA  95353, or hand delivered to the Parks, Recreation and Neighborhoods Department office at 1010 10th Street, Suite 4400 or the Senior Citizens Center at 211 Bodem Street, by 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, November 12th.

Printable PDF version of parade rules.

General Rules

  • Entries without lights will not be allowed to participate.  All entries must have lights.  There is no exception to this rule.  
  • Absolutely no Santa or Santa costumes (hats are only exception) will be allowed on any entry or your entry will be disqualified and unable to participate in parade.  Santa will be rounding out the parade on the fire truck for all to see.
  • No entry may stop to perform at any point along the parade route.  All float riders must stay on float at all times.    
  • Handout items must be pre-approved by the City prior to final entry deadline of November 12th, 2019.  
  • Absolutely no item may be handed out or thrown from an entry.  You may hand out pre-approved items at least ten feet from entry vehicles.  Candy, favors, handouts may not be thrown at Parade attendees. This is for the safety of everyone involved.
  • Absolutely no alcoholic beverages will be allowed in the staging area or on any entries.
  • There must be one adult supervisor for every ten children walking or riding on an entry.


Parade marshals along the route will monitor entries and violators will be disqualified from judging.  Aside from not abiding by the rules, your entry will be disqualified if any of the below requirements are not met.

  • If your entry exceeds 75 feet on the day of the parade or is wider than 20 feet, you will be asked to comply with registered total length or forfeit entry.  Your participation may be jeopardized if your entry exceeds allotted space and/or does not comply with rules.
  • All vehicles used for your entry must be in their assigned staging location in the staging area between 2:30 PM and 4:00 PM.
  • All entries must have lights.

Floats and Vehicles

Size Limitations

  • Entries may not exceed eight (8) standard vehicles and/or 75 feet in length and 20 feet in width
  • Multiple entries will need to be purchased if more than eight (8) vehicles or over 75 foot maximum length.  The cost of each entry is $60 or $80 after close of business on October 31st. 
  • Entries with large trucks, trailers, semis and semi-trailers may not exceed 75 feet in total length unless multiple entries purchased.  
  • No entry may exceed 20 feet in width.  

Entry Check-in and Staging Information

  • Designated staging area location information will be emailed to you the week of the parade.  
  • You may not drop people off or park non-parade entry vehicles inside the staging area.  Please inform all participants and parents/guardians of this rule and pre-determine a drop off and / or pick up location.
  • You will be provided with an entry number when you check in at the staging area on the day of the parade.  This entry number must be on display in a visible location on the front left side of the vehicle or float.
  • All vehicles used for your entry must be in their assigned staging location in the staging area between 2:30 PM and 4:00 PM.  Absolutely no vehicles will be allowed in after 4 p.m.  This is for the safety of all, especially small children in the staging area. 
  • If there is a staging location that you prefer, please make that request on your application (please keep in mind there are no guarantees).
  • Only vehicles that have been approved on the entry application and driving in the parade will be allowed in the designated staging areas.
  • Entries not go back to original staging location to tear-down your entry

Float Judging

The “Sweepstakes Award” will be chosen for the overall best use of lights and music.

  • Entries without lights will not be allowed to participate.  All entries must have lights.  The more lights that you have, the better your entry will look in the dark.  
  • Entries will be judged based on creativity, originality and the use of lights, music and “Candyland” theme.  We encourage very loud music and to have your organization’s banner displayed in front of your entry.