Parade will close downtown Austin streets Saturday

Blue Santa waves at the crowd lining the route during the 2015 Chuy's Parade, Nov 28th, 2015.
Blue Santa waves at the crowd lining the route during the 2015 Chuy's Parade, Nov 28th, 2015. (KXAN Photo)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Plan ahead if you’re driving to or through downtown on Saturday.

Chuy’s Children Giving to Children Parade will result in street closures beginning as early as 6 a.m. and ending at 2 p.m. The parade itself starts at 10:45 a.m.

Complete road closures start at 6 a.m., including San Jacinto Boulevard from East 10th-15th Streets. The Ann Richards/Congress Avenue Bridge closes at 8 a.m. All other street closures begin at 9 a.m. and include Congress beginning at the Capitol, following the parade route down Congress all the way to the bridge.

Cross town traffic will be allowed on Fifth and Sixth Streets until 9 a.m. and on Cesar Chavez Street until 10 a.m. Towing will be strictly enforced on Congress Avenue from Cesar Chavez to 11th St. All meters will be bagged and signs posted. For more information, visit www.austintexas.gov/citystage.

Drivers are encouraged to use extra caution in the downtown area due to high pedestrian traffic and the number of small children attending the parade.

The Chuy’s Children Giving to Children Parade is an annual toy drive benefiting Austin Police Operation Blue Santa. Those attending the parade are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy to donate for infants up to 14 year olds. The unwrapped toys may be placed on parade entries at a designated time during the parade (while the units are stopped). In addition, the parade will feature giant inflatable balloons, live music, children’s entertainers, marching bands, holiday floats, classic cars and Santa Claus.

Austin Police Operation Blue Santa is a charitable outreach effort created in 1972 by two APD patrol officers who realized that some families in their area would not have gifts or food for their children at Christmas. For more information about Austin Police Operation Blue Santa, visit www.bluesanta.org.

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