SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Schenectady County and Schenectady City have announced the parade pre-party along with the Grand Marshal who will kick off the 53 Annual Holiday Parade. Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity of Schenectady County, Madelyn Thorne, will lead the parade.

“We are proud to kick off the holiday season this year with the 53rd Annual Holiday Parade in
downtown Schenectady and we are thrilled to have the one-and-only Madelyn Thorne leading the way,” Mayor Gary McCarthy said. “This is an incredibly special event each year and we welcome families from all across the region to join us as we kick off the holiday season.”

Schenectady County explains the Grand Marshal was chosen because she is someone who embraces the parade’s value of “Dream Big” and has made big contributions to the community and helped make our County and City a better place to live, work, and play.

“The parade’s theme this year is ‘Dream Big,’ and how much bigger can you dream than owning a home of your own?” said Thorne. “I am truly honored to be a part of this amazing Capital Region event, and I very much look forward to the hope this holiday season will bring to the community.” Thorne will be joined by artist Girl Blue, Miss New York Taryn Smith, and the big man himself, Santa.

Schenectady County announced a pre-parade party will take place at 3 p.m. with entertainment and activities for all. B95.5 is this year’s radio partner, DJs Chad & Kristina announced that pre-parade festivities will be headlined by Ryan Cabrera, known for singles “One the Way Down,” “Shine On,” and “Photo.” The fun begins along Jay Street where families can enjoy picture opportunities with characters from The Costumer, shopping, and restaurants. New10ABC’s Lydia Kulbida will Co-host the parade which is scheduled for November 19 at 5 p.m. in downtown Schenectady.