Pickering has served with the 76th IBCT Army National Guard for nine years and plans to be home for a while.
His first night home he took his wife, Ami, on a carriage ride downtown.
Several residents including the Pickerings braved the cold to take a 10-minute carriage ride free of charge.
Volunteers from the Civic League handed out tickets and made sure everything ran smoothly for freezing riders. Cloverdale Main Street sponsored it.
Enchanted Evening Carriage Company provided the rides.
It is scheduled to be back in town Dec. 12-13 and Christmas Eve.
In addition, the annual Christmas tree lighting took place downtown Friday.
Cassidy Bean and Katie Smith, who are fourth-grade students at Cloverdale Elementary, were in charge of lighting the tree. Cloverdale Elementary art class made red bows adorning the tree and Endeavor Communications put the lights in place.
A second tree decorates downtown with red, white and blue lights. It is honor of service men and women.