There were dogs, there were dancers and probably a reindeer called Prancer - and a jolly bearded bloke in a red suit.

It was the annual Kowhainui Home and Retirement Village Christmas Parade on Wednesday and manager Trish Boswell said, as usual, members of the community came along to take part with staff, residents and their families.

The parade wended its way several times around the home to the delight of residents seated in the hallways.

Whanganui mayor Hamish McDouall was there in his robes and chain but he was arguably sartorially outdone by Councillor Josh Chandulal-Mackay who was kitted out in a green, white and red Christmas-themed suit.

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A crew of firefighters joined mascot Barry the Butcher from the Whanganui Rugby Union in a more sedate stroll while members of the Boys and Girls Gym Club (along with a Kowhainui staff member) did cartwheels and flips and students from Whanganui Ballet & Dance Academy strutted their stuff.

The dressed-up dogs were a huge hit with the residents but the loudest ooh and aahs were heard when they spotted a six-week-old baby in the parade. And of course Santa got a big cheer.

After the excitement of the parade, everyone relaxed with a sausage sizzle and refreshments.

There were costumes galore, including this glittering Christmas tree outfit.
There were costumes galore, including this glittering Christmas tree outfit.