Introducing… the 2016 Christmas Parade Grand Marshal — Derick Nowacki
If Christmas truly is for the young at heart, the community got it right with Warren teen
Derick Nowacki loves to give back to Warren County.
Now, Warren County is trying to return the favor.
Nowacki has been named the Grand Marshal of 2016 Warren Christmas Parade after a two-week online vote at timesobserver.com. The parade will be held on Friday, beginning at 6:30 p.m. in downtown Warren.
Nowacki, 17, is a senior at Warren Area High School. Despite his youth, he is heavily involved in the Warren community.
He is vice president of his senior class at Warren Area High School, a member of the National Honor Society and on the school golf and track teams.
“Dewey,” as he’s known to family and friends, was recently promoted to chief of the Warren Law Enforcement Explorer Post 312, a Boys Scouts law enforcement division with the City of Warren Police. Nowacki plans on going to college to major in Nursing, but he ultimately wants to become a state police trooper.
He’s experienced hands-on training in finger printing at special events through his Explorers post, and has “learned to speak with the public and relate to them on a personal level,” he said.
Derick joined Pleasant Township Volunteer Fire Department in 2014 as a junior member, and attends classes on firefighting. He also joined Glade Township Volunteer Fire Department to help with water rescue, and is classified as an EMR (Emergency Medical Responder).
“He takes pride in his community and wants to come back after he graduates from college,” said his grandmother, Mrs. Josephine Scully, at the time of his nomination for Grand Marshal.
The selection of Nowacki as Grand Marshal is well deserved, said Times Observer Managing Editor Jon Sitler.
“Do not judge Derick by his youth, because he has already accomplished a lot in his young life. There may not be a better person to represent his generation,” Sitler said. “And we can celebrate our county’s youth through Derick.”
Being elected Grand Marshal is not something that Derick takes lightly.
“To be honest, I am shocked and excited at the same time,” Nowacki said. “The four other candidates are definitely pillars in our community and are very worthy of this distinction. As excited as I am about being Grand Marshal, I feel that the true winner here is the city of Warren. We truly do have so many outstanding individuals that make our town what it is. I am proud to represent my city in the realm of Grand Marshal. I would like to thank my grandmother for nominating me as Grand Marshal. I would like to thank my family and friends for voting for me. I would like to thank the Warren Times Observer for letting me have the nomination as Grand Marshal. I would also like to thank the community for standing behind me and voting for me. It is truly an honor.”
Attending the parade will not be something new for Derick, as the Christmas Parade has been a yearly tradition for him since he was a young boy.
“I have been going to the parade ever since I was a toddler,” he said. “My favorite part about the Christmas Parade was going around to all of the local businesses and seeing all of the window displays. One thing I enjoyed was going around and seeing what unique thing each business has to offer each year. Listening to the Christmas carols and seeing Santa really brings out the Christmas spirit in everyone. Another thing I enjoy about the parade is watching the lighting of the Christmas tree and watching everyone’s faces light up when they see Santa Claus go by in his sleigh.”
Now, Nowacki is taking on his own role in the parade.
“I look forward to seeing all of my family and friends and seeing all of the community members of Warren who support the parade and the downtown every year,” he said. “I have a long list of Christmas ideas, so I look forward to seeing Santa as well.”