Roberts grand marshal of Xmas parade

Mayor John Ditslear has announced that the grand marshal of this year’s Christmas parade will be Don Roberts. Roberts is a Navy veteran and a retired teacher from Noblesville High School. He also has served for several years as Santa Claus.

For many years, the Santa house on the downtown Noblesville courthouse square was an annual tradition. After an absence of it for several years, Roberts told the Hamilton County Historical Society that he would build a new Santa house, donate it to the organization and serve as Santa. The Hamilton County Commissioners approved the request to have the house on the courthouse square in 2001. True to his word, Roberts built the house and has served as one of the Santas each year since then.

“Many people in Noblesville are grateful to Don for the guidance he provided to them as a teacher,” said Ditslear. “There is another, younger generation of people who don’t know Don as himself but only as ‘Santa’ and that group of young people is equally as grateful to him.”

In another nod to Noblesville tradition, Santa in this year’s Christmas parade will be played by Noblesville resident Garrick Mallery, who played Santa in the inaugural Noblesville Christmas parade in 1962. For the 50th anniversary of that parade, the city is pleased to have Mallery reprise his role as Santa.

The Christmas parade will be held on Nov. 25 beginning at 2 p.m. This year’s theme will be “The Magic of Santa.” Parade entry forms will be available in mid-October. To request an entry form, contact Cara Culp at 776-6367 or

Robert Herrington

Managing editor of Current in Noblesville. A 1999 graduate of Noblesville High School, Herrington has been covering Noblesville and Hamilton County as a journalist since 2004. The military brat lived all over the east coast before calling Noblesville home since 1994. He and his wife, Maggie, live in the community with their baby daughter (and youngest Boston Red Sox fan), Caroline. From school board to common council meetings, First Friday events and summer concerts in the city parks, Herrington loves to attend and cover all that Noblesville has to offer.

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