Willard Scott, the longtime weatherman and centenarian on NBC’s “The Today Show,” will serve as the Grand Marshal for the Campagna Center’s 38th Annual Scottish Christmas Walk Parade.
The parade, presented by The Campagna Center, the St. Andrew’s Society, and the City of Alexandria–will be held on Saturday, December 5 in Old Town.
“George Washington and Robert E. Lee…Boy am I in good company!” said Scott, referring to the Alexandria’s historic roots.
As Grand Marshal, Scott will lead more than 120 Scottish Clans, pipe and drum bands,Scottish dancers, re-enactment groups, canine marchers, local dignitaries and, of course, Santa Claus, through the streets of Old Town. The Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend launches Alexandria’s holiday season with events to celebrate and honor Alexandria’s Scottish founders.
“The Campagna Center is honored and excited to welcome Willard as the Grand Marshal of our 38th Annual Scottish Christmas Walk Parade,” said Campagna Center President and CEO Karen Hughes. “As a native Alexandrian, we are thrilled that Willard will be joining us as we celebrate our community’s rich heritage and kick off the holiday season.”
Since joining The Today Show in 1980, Scott has brightened the mornings of millions of viewers. In addition to serving as The Today Show’s substitute weather reporter, Scott appears on Tuesdays and Thursdays for his ever-popular 100th birthday centenarian salutes, in which he sends birthday wishes to centenarians nationwide. In 1950, Scott began his career with NBC as a page at the Washington station. At that time he also worked as a weekend disc jockey for WINX radio station. Scott joined WOL Radio in 1950 and, with Ed Walker, formed The Joys Boys broadcast team.
The team moved to WRC-AM, the NBC Radio Station in Washington, DC, in 1953 and remained there until 1972. The Joys Boys broadcast from WWDC, Washington from 1972 until
Over the years, Scott has received numerous awards acknowledging his myriad public service efforts. He has been named both Distinguished Virginian by the Virginia Association of Broadcasters (1990) and Washingtonian of the Year by Washingtonian Magazine (1979). In 1985 Scott was named Humanitarian in Residence by the National Society of Fund Raisers and was also recognized by President Ronald Reagan with the Private Sector Award for Public Service. Scott received the Great American Award from the Bards of Bohemia in New Orleans in 1990.
A graduate of American University, Scott holds a B.A. in philosophy and religion.
The Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend has been consistently ranked by the Southeast Tourism Society as one of the Top 20 Events in the South, each year the Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend draws as many as 30,000 participants and families to the City of Alexandria.
Over the years, the Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend has grown from a small, informal parade to an entire weekend filled with events and festivities.
In addition to the Scottish Walk Parade, weekend events include a children’s concert, a children’s tea, a Celtic concert, a marketplace, the Holiday Designer Tour of Homes, Santa’s Workshop and a scotch tasting, the Taste of Scotland.
The Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend is one of the largest fundraising activities for The Campagna Center.