GREENVILLE, Ohio – Dick Brown knows a little something about holiday lights. So when it comes to sponsoring the Hometown Holiday Horse Parade the well-known Greenville resident and the popular parade are a perfect match.
Brown, the grand marshal of the 2018 Hometown Holiday Horse Parade, serves as a Platinum Sponsor for this year’s event. The 18th annual parade, hosted by Main Street Greenville, takes place on S. Broadway Street on Nov. 20th starting at 7 p.m. The event traditionally features more than 90 lighted horse drawn carriages, hitches and riders.
As for Brown, he has provided area residents a spectacular Christmas light display at his home at 5480 Requarth Road. This season marks the 29th year for the display that has gone from one strand of lights on each side of his front door to the more than 100,000 bulbs now.
“I don’t try to count them,” Brown said, laughing. “We’ve had people from Defiance, Lima, Hamilton and over by Columbus – people all over the state have come over just to see the lights. Now it’s sort of an institution.”
Brown has started setting up his outdoor display for this season. In the past Brown and his late wife, Dianne, also invited visitors inside their home to view displays there as well. With Dianne’s passing in March, having an inside display for visitors hasn’t been finalized yet. The Browns were married 45 years. The couple had two daughters, Brandy and Dr. Joshua Hill of Delaware, Ohio, and Betsy and Kraig Reiber of Centerville. They have four grandchildren.
“I’ve just always been interested (in supporting the parade) because I’m from Greenville and I want to do things to help make the community a little better,” Brown said.
Brown isn’t sure how many people view his Christmas lights every season. He does know he passed out more than 11,000 full-size candy canes last year – 7,000 in the driveway and 4,000 inside the house. The display typically runs from 5-10 p.m.
Brown’s dedication to Greenville is as vast as his light display. The life-long Darke County resident graduated from Greenville High School in 1964 and Miami University in 1968. He worked for Pratt & Whitney briefly before owning and operating McVay’s Sporting Goods. He also worked as a real estate appraiser for Greenville Federal. He’s a member of First Presbyterian Church, is president of the GHS Alumni Association and previously served on the board of trustees for the Garst Museum.
The Hometown Holiday Horse Parade, led by chairperson Diana Stebbins, provides a variety of entertainment options including music and pony rides as well as shopping and dining options among Greenville’s unique selection of downtown businesses. The parade route travels down S. Broadway Street, travels around the circle and back up S. Broadway.
“I think it’s a really neat thing. It’s great Greenville has something that no one else really had,” Brown said. “I think it’s a unique experience you don’t see otherwise. It’s become duplicated in other cities around here, but originally it started here and was such a great idea.”
For more information about Main Street Greenville and the 18th annual Hometown Holiday Horse Event, visit MSG’s Facebook page at facebook.com/mainstreetgreenville.
Main Street Greenville is a non-profit organization committed to stimulating and supporting revitalization efforts, historic preservation and economic growth in Historic Downtown Greenville. To learn more about the organization, visit mainstreetgreenville.org, call 937-548-4998 or email email@example.com.
The Hometown Holiday Horse Parade features dozens of lighted horse drawn carriages, buggies and riders as they welcome in the holiday season. The 2021 event takes place on Saturday, November 20th, with pre-parade entertainment beginning at 5:30 p.m. and the parade starting at 7 p.m.
To participate contact Chairperson Diana Stebbins at 937-606-4776 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.