Christmas events on tap in county communities

November 25, 2015

Santa is coming to Clare County soon. He will make appearances in Clare, Farwell and Harrison beginning the first week of December. 2014 File Photo

Santa is coming to Clare County soon. He will make appearances in Clare, Farwell and Harrison beginning the first week of December.
2014 File Photo

By Pat Maurer

Clare County is gearing up for some special Christmas time events in all three communities beginning December 1st.

That’s when the fun begins in Clare with the traditional Love Light Trees Ceremony in front of MidMichigan Health at 7 p.m. on the 1st. when their beautiful holiday lights come on for the season.
MidMichigan Health Systems website says, “The holidays are a time of joy, laughter, family and friends. For many of us it is also a time of giving and remembering. MidMichigan Health sponsors a number of events to help us remember loved ones while at the same time supporting health care needs within our communities. One example is the lighting of the Love Light Trees in Clare, Gladwin and Midland.
This annual project has generated nearly a million dollars collectively over the years, enabling these MidMichigan locations to provide much needed equipment and support services to enhance patient care. The event culminates for all three medical centers with a lighting ceremony held in early December. Lights illuminated on evergreen trees in each location signify donations received by the program.
Friday, December 4th activities in Clare include an “Elf-Land Lanes” at Gateway Lanes from 6 to 9 p.m. and the performance of “A Christmas Carol” at the Clare Congregational Church at 7 p.m.

Saturday is the big day in the little town of Clare:
*From 9 to 10:30 a.m. Ponderosa will host “Breakfast With Santa.”
*From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. there will be “S’mores at Clare Hardware.
*From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Clare Castle and various retailers will host a “Santa’s Elves Craft Show.”
*From 10 a.m. to noon SUN (Some Ukulele Nuts) will perform at Cops and Doughnuts. They welcome anyone to sing along or even bring their own instrument and play with them.
*From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. it will be Cookie Decorating and Hot Cocoa at JT Bakers on Fourth Street.
*From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. the Pere Marquette District Library, together with Cops and Doughnuts will sponsor “Santa at the Library” with story time and photos.
*From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Clare Parks and Rec will hold “Reindeer Games on West Fourth Street.
*From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Herrick House the Clare Police Department will sponsor “Hot Cocoa with Officer David.
*From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. the Clare High School Drama Club will provide “Live Mannequins in Downtown Clare’s store windows.
*From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. the Joshua’s House will sponsor an “Elf Shop with Kids for youngsters age 12 and under at the Red Door Thrift Store just a couple blocks north of downtown on McEwan.
*From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. the Clare Jaycees will sponsor a “Winter Warm Up Collection on 4th Street.
*From noon to 2 p.m. it will be “Children’s Crafts” at Made With Loving Hands in downtown Clare.
*From noon to 2 p.m. is the Clare Jaycees “Chili Cook-Off” at the Clare Castle where the Jaycees will also be holding their Winter Warm Up Clothing Collection and trying to “fill the truck.”
*From noon to 3 p.m. the Clare Rotary Club and Rooftop Reindeer Farms will have Live Reindeer at the Herrick House. A crew from Nat Geo Film Crews will also be there filming for a Christmas 2016 show.
*From noon to 3 p.m. the Members First Credit Union will sponsor Carriage Rides. Meet by the 4th Street by the Library to catch a ride around Clare.
*From noon to 3 p.m. it is “Find The Elf on the Shelf” at Ray’s Bike Shop.
*At 1 p.m. the “Frozen T-Shirt Contest (with cash prizes) will be held at Stitches for Britches on Fourth Street.
*At 1 p.m. Hungry Howie’s Pizza will sponsor a Kids Pizza Eating contest on West Fourth Street in the tent.
*From 1 to 3 p.m. Isabella Bank will sponsor “Face Painting” at Maxwell’s.
*At 2 p.m. Newman’s School of Dance will have a “Flash Mob Dance” on Fourth Street.
*At 2:30 p.m. “The Elf Run,” and Costume Contest, sponsored by the Clare Chamber and Family Fitness, will start on East Fourth Street.
*From 2 to 4 p.m. there will be Donut Games with Mrs. Santa and Music with Campfire Dan at Cops and Doughnuts.
*From 2 to 4 p.m. a “Christmas Tea” will be held at Maxwell’s Flowers and Gifts.
*From 2 to 4 p.m. Cops and Doughnuts will sponsor Santa at the Santa House in Clare City Park where he will be available to hear children’s wishes.
*From 6 to 8 p.m. 22 local artists will be featured at the “Art Fordables” Public Reception at the 515 Gallery.
*At 7 p.m. “A Christmas Carol” will be performed at the Clare Congregational Church.
*And to wind up the day, at dark it will be the “light Up the Town Challenge” with a Map and votes to be cast on the Clare Chamber’s website and Facebook page as well as at several business around town. Voting will continue through December 24 for the Neighborhood Challenge.

Saturday, December 5th is also a special day in the neighboring community of Farwell where the annual Holiday Lights Festival and Holiday Lights Marketplace will be held.

The Farwell Holiday Lights Festival activities and the Holiday Marketplace will begin at 10 a.m. at the Farwell High School.

Later the annual Holiday Lights Parade will begin at 5:30 p.m., and had down Main Street to delight Village residents and visitors alike. Once again the Grand Marshall for the big parade will be a student selected from the Farwell Area Schools’ “Who wants to be a Grand Marshall” contest.
The theme for this year’s parade is “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”

And there is more to come when Harrison presents its annual Christmas Celebration and Community Christmas Tree Lighting on Saturday, December 12 at Hillside Elementary.

This year’s Memorial Tree is located in front of Hillside Elementary will be lit at 6 p.m. in conjunction with the reading of the 2015 Endowments. Everyone is invited to attend and witness the lighting of the tree in memory of those who we miss during the Holiday season.

Immediately following the Tree Lighting, everyone is invited to join us inside Hillside Gym for a special appearance by Santa Claus, a book reading with free books to area families and free refreshments donated by Family Fare of Harrison.

Sponsors for the events are Family Fare, Harrison Realty, MidMichigan Health, Members’ First Credit Union, Chemical Bank, Hillside Elementary and the Harrison Chamber of Commerce.

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