By Shay from CA
I'd go with the main themes in the song, like shoppers with their packages, Santa's big scene, Bells that work to fit the theme song, "ring-a-ling," "hear them ring," If you have singers that can hold a tune with a microphone, such as the shoppers with their packages singing "Silver Bells, while moving about to collect their wrapped packages, it would help. My mother's favorite Christmas Song, and somehow, I can actually see this float coming to life.
Good singers, dressed in "outdoor" holiday garb, picking up wrapped presents, singing "Silver Bells," with bells that blend with the song, and depending on the budget, a Santa could be there, in a chair, or partial sled, and then during the song, when the song gets to Santa, perhaps some fake snow going up in the air. It's definitely a budget thing.
Just an idea off the top of my head: put silver spray paint on the tops of 2-liter soda bottles that have had the bottoms cut off. With fishing line, hang a silver painted ball (ping pong ball?) from the inside. String the soda bottles together to create a garland along the sides of the float. You'll probably need about 20 or so.
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