WILLIAMSTOWN -- Snow flurries and cold temperatures did not keep hundreds from heading to Spring Street to attend the annual Williamstown Holiday Walk on Saturday.
"I noticed an increase in business," said Linda Bermudez, an employee at Nature's Closet on Spring Street. "I definitely noticed an increase in the crowd."
Bermudez, of Bennington, Vt., added that both kids and adults seemed very excited about the event's staple procession, the Reindog Parade.
The parade kicked off at 4 p.m. with more than 100 dogs and their owners making their way down Spring Street, followed by riders on horses and Santa waving to the crowd from the back of a fire truck.
The dogs were dressed in a variety of costumes: Some wore Santa outfits while others pulled make-shift sleighs.
West Pawlet, Vt., youths Stella and Lucy Farrell brought their schnauzer-poodle mix, Inca, dressed as a hobo, complete with a bindle stick on his back. It was Inca's third time in the parade.
"I just thought it was the best get-together when we did it last year," said Chris Girard, of North Adams. "It's the cutest parade you will ever see. It just warms your heart."
Girard's 2-year-old Chihuahua, Meika, was there for her second parade. Meika traded last year's plaid party dress for a Christmas sweater this year and Girard also had a bag of candy canes to hand out.
"That's how much we love this parade," she said.
Next to the line-up
"I'm just amazed by people's creativity," said Sandy Rich, of Williamstown, who attends the Showcase every year.
Terry Lamb, of Williamstown, has been making trees for five or six years and has worked on the committee for the Christmas Tree Showcase for four years.
"I think every year we have a great turnout," she said. "It's a nice community effort."
Lamb's husband, Renzie, had an angel tree set up where attendees could buy an angel ornament for $5 in memory of someone. Whenever an angel on the tree was bought, it would be lit up.
"It's very sweet," Terry said.
Other activities on Spring Street included a holiday bake-off at The Log, a penny social at Williams College's Lasell Gymnasium, and sleigh rides provided by David Larabee. Additionally, attendees could stop and listen to various choirs or bands performing holiday tunes throughout the evening.
Volunteers at a stand for the Southwestern Vermont Medi cal Center in Ben nington, Vt., a sponsor for the Holiday Walk, handed out holiday necklace-making kits and antlers to be part of the holiday spirit.
"We really wanted to find a way to be part of the Williamstown community," said Erica Cummings, a public relations specialist at the hospital. "We had a blast."
While Cummings, who is from Bennington, Vt., was experiencing her first year at the Holiday Walk, Huff Templeton, of Williamstown, was celebrating his 10th by selling rosemary white bean soup and chocolate chip cookies outside the Ephporium Spring Street Market. He said he believed the turnout for this year's event was better than last year's.
The Holiday Walk concluded at 7 p.m. with a tree-lighting on the bottom of Spring Street, led by Santa Claus himself.