Despite low temperatures and a chilling wind, a crowd filled downtown Owatonna for the annual lighted holiday parade. They were rewarded with an appearance from Santa.

A parade with more than 30 units cruised through downtown Owatonna on Thursday. Most of the vehicles were adorned with holiday lights. Several towed Christmas-themed scenes on trailers. Many tossed candy to the heavily-bundled up children that lined Cedar Avenue.

People then gathered in Central Park to see Sharon Stark turn on the holiday lights and listen to a performance by the Owatonna High School Carolers. Santa also greeted people and posed for pictures.

The Owatonna Area Chamber of Commerce invites residents to enjoy the Hometown Holiday weekend December 3-6. Activities include the Little Theatre of Owatonna's production of A Christmas Carol, Christmas in the village at the Village of Yesteryear and the historic holiday house tour.

Shop with Santa is December 5 to benefit Steele County 4-H. The Star of Hope lighting event is December 6 at Daybreak Community Church.