KETCHUM, IDAHO – Mayor Neil Bradshaw has named Jack Williams the 2018 Wagon Days Grand Marshal.
Williams, also known as Santa, arrived in Ketchum in 1977 as a photographer after seeing Sun Valley Serenade. He then dreamed of making Sun Valley his home. For over 30 years, Williams has held the role of Santa around the holiday season in Ketchum.
Ketchum Mayor Neil Bradshaw detailed the selection of Jack Williams as Grand Marshal stating, “Jack’s legacy is much more than Santa – his love, empathy, respect and good citizenship has touched many. This is our chance to recognize the warmth he has brought to so many hearts in the chilly days of December, as well as the kindness he has spread throughout the year.”
When Williams originally received the call from Mayor Bradshaw, he thought a friend was playing a joke on him. He watched videos of Mayor Bradshaw speaking before he believed he had been selected as the Grand Marshal. In response to his selection, Williams stated, “I am completely amazed and humbled. The love this community has for me is overwhelming and I greatly appreciate it.”
The community is invited to honor Jack Williams as the 2018 Grand Marshal at a reception on Friday, August 31, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Ketchum Town Square. Food and beverages will be available.
A Barn Dance follows the event from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Ore Wagon Museum with music by Old Death Whisper.
Wagon Days 2018 gets underway at 11 a.m. on Friday, August 31, with the traditional reading of cowboy poetry at the Ore Wagon Museum. The centerpiece event is the Big Hitch Parade, one of the largest, non-motorized parades in the Pacific Northwest featuring museum-quality buggies, carriages, carts, stage coaches and wagons. The Big Hitch Parade starts Saturday, September 1, at 1 p.m.
Weekend festivities come to a close after the Street Party following the parade with music by The Last Bandoleros.
For more information about the 2018 Wagon Days Weekend, visit: https://www.wagondays.com/
About the City of Ketchum
The City of Ketchum is located in the Wood River Valley in south central Idaho. Founded in 1880 during the mining boom, Ketchum is now regarded as one of the most popular destinations for winter and summer visitors due to its world-class skiing, fishing, hiking, mountain biking, restaurants, art galleries and shopping. The City of Ketchum hosts the famous annual Wagon Days Parade, held on Labor Day weekend, and numerous other year-round attractions. Ketchum is home to more than 10,000 full- and part-time residents. For more information about the City of Ketchum, visit www.ketchumidaho.org.