Hollywood Christmas Parade ends its existence

The curtain has closed on a Hollywood tradition.

Officials announced Wednesday that after 75 years, the Hollywood Christmas Parade has been canceled due to rising costs and loss in revenue.

"This is a very difficult thing for us to have to do," said Jeff Briggs, chairman of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce's board of directors. "We're disappointed and sad. But we're out of the parade business."

The chamber started the parade in 1928 to lure shoppers to Hollywood Boulevard by decorating it with live trees and Christmas ornaments. It grew in size and crowds over the years, attracting people who wanted to see movie stars ride on elaborate floats, the AP said.

Bing Crosby, James Stewart, Ronald and Nancy Reagan, Charlton Heston and Natalie Wood were among those who took part in the parade through the years. Singing cowboy Gene Autry was a major parade supporter.

But in recent years, the parade struggled to attract celebrity participants and a national television audience.

The chamber, which is supported by member dues, said it lost about $100,000 (EUR 75,000) in producing last year's $1 million (EUR 750,000) event.

Johnny Grant, the honorary mayor of Hollywood who ran the parade for 22 years, said he was heartbroken to see the parade end. Last year's parade was his last as executive producer.

"When that last float went down the street last year, half my life went with it," he said. "But L.A.'s changing, America's changing. The public has many more entertainment platforms now."

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