San Benito to hold Christmas parade

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In this undated photo, people attend and participate in the city of San Benito’s Christmas parade. (Courtesy: City of San Benito/Facebook)

SAN BENITO — Actor Ray Stewart will help kick off the city’s 81 annual Christmas parade, striking the theme “Christmas at the Movies.”

The San Benito native who starred in the hit comedy series “Barney Miller” will serve as grand marshal of the event set for 6 p.m. Dec. 9, running along Sam Houston Boulevard southward from Hicks to Swanson streets.

“I am thrilled and honored to be this year’s grand marshal,” Stewart, who’s lived in San Benito since the 1980s after taking the stage and screen in New York and Los Angeles for more than three decades.

“It’s ironic because a few years ago I drove the convertible that carried the grand marshal in the parade, and now, here I am — the grand marshal,” he said.

The parade will feature more than 80 entrants, including marching bands, car clubs, horse clubs and festive floats.

Along the route, vendors will offer food, beverages and treats.