Downtown Huntington will be filled with the delights of the season for Christmas in the City, on Saturday, Nov. 27.
From 3 to 5:30 p.m., children, along with their families, are invited to celebrate Christmas with games, pony rides, a petting zoo, Christmas tree lighting at Rotary Centennial Park, a visit to Santa at the Courthouse and more.
The Downtown Business Association (DBA) Heart of Huntington, along with the City of Huntington and the Huntington County Chamber of Commerce, organize Christmas in the City each year, and the activities are free to those who attend. The opportunities for fun will be located in various places throughout the downtown area. Downtown stores and restaurants will also be open.
Adults also have a special part in Christmas in the City, and may pick up a “passport” at The Party Shop for shopping Friday and Saturday. The passport will be stamped at locations downtown where a purchase is made. The completed passport with at least five stamps can be turned into HomeCraft –
The Art of Home, 400 N. Jefferson St. (second block), and prizes will be awarded to three lucky winners. Chamber Bucks will be awarded to first place, $125; second, $75; and third place, $50.
Saturday, Nov. 27, will begin with Donuts with Santa at the Huntington County Historical Museum, 315 Court St., from 10 to 11 a.m. Milk and donuts will be provided, and an opportunity will be offered to write a “Letter to Santa.” Call the museum at 356-7264 and leave a message to place a reservation for the event. Reservations are required and space is limited.
Visits with Santa will take place in the decorated Courthouse rotunda from 3 to 5 p.m. Children can tell their Christmas wishes to Santa seated nearby, and family pictures will be taken at no charge by Frederick’s Photography. Those visiting Santa are encouraged to come early to ensure that there is time to get their picture taken.
Children’s games, sponsored by Smith Furniture, will be offered in the first block of downtown on Jefferson Street. Games include Tic Tac Toe, Snowman Bowling, Bean Bag Toss, Can Toss and a Sven Ring Toss. Children can pluck a treat from a lollipop Christmas tree, and The Indiana Dream Center will help with games. Jasmine and Thor will be on hand to greet children at the Downtown Salon and provide photo opportunities. Bend the Trend Boutique & Décor will host visits with Cindy Lou Who and her dog Max. Goody gift bags for children will be given by Not To Shabby.
Visits and photos with Christmas Belle from Beauty and the Beast will be located inside of Huntington’s newest shop, The Fiber Alchemist, 442 N. Jefferson St., in the second block of downtown. HomeCraft – The Art of Home, at the tip of the second block, will offer a gift wrapping demonstration every half an hour and will have cookies available for children and families to take home to decorate. HomeCraft will also host a six-foot animatronic Santa Claus.
Vendors will showcase their wares also in the second block. Currently, Eleanor Violet & Co. will sell candles, wax melts and diffusers; Color Street will sell nail polish strips; salts, balms and more will be offered by Soul Journey; Tehyas Trinkets, jewelry and the Huntington Parks & Recreation Department will sell Wolf & Dessaur Christmas tree ornaments for a fee.
The third block of downtown will feature a Nativity Scene in the windows of the Meal Ministry where hot chocolate, by the Meal Ministry, and cookies, by the Brick House Grill, will be served inside. Buddy the Elf and Jovie will greet children at Little Sweets Spot candy store, 315 N. Jefferson St.
Live reindeer and an alpaca, sponsored by Duke Energy and Bendix, will be a favorite area for children to visit. Pony rides and a petting zoo will also be available in the third block, sponsored by ProFed Credit Union, Fort Wayne. Face painting will take place at the Fifth Parlor hair salon, Market Street.
The Grinch and Snoopy will be on hand while stories are read in the Huntington Arts and Entrepreneurial Center (HAEC), Franklin Street (across from the Courthouse). Free books will be given to each family who visit while supplies last. Coloring books and crayons will be gifted to children, courtesy of Lake City Bank.
The Huntington City-Township Public Library will operate Santa’s Workshop, also in the Arts and Entrepreneurial Center. A Grinch-themed coloring packet and crafts will be offered along with photo opportunities. Ornament decorating will also be available as part of Santa’s Workshop.
A mailbox will be available at the HAEC for “Letters to Santa.” The letters can be pre-written and brought along from home, written at the Historical Museum Donuts with Santa or written in the center and placed in the mail box. Letters can also be mailed to City Services, 734 Webster St., Huntington, IN 46750 or to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday, Dec. 17. All letters will receive an answer from “Santa” and parents are asked to make sure a name and address accompanies the child’s letter.
Cutouts of Olaf from Frozen, a Gingerbread person, the Polar Express and a Create Your Own Snowman area will be on the sidewalks throughout the downtown for photo opportunities. Evangelical United Methodist Church congregation will be part of a live Nativity scene. The Theatre Guild will conduct a coloring contest with the grand prize being tickets to their 2022 production of Willy Wonka.
Free popcorn will be provided downtown and will be served by the Bethel Assembly of God Rooted Student Ministries. The Lime City Brass will provide musical selections throughout the afternoon.
The grand finale will feature a HARTA bicyclists light parade and Santa on a firetruck arriving at Rotary Centennial Park at 5:50 p.m. for a 6 p.m. Christmas tree lighting. The Christmas tree lighting will be accented by musical entertainment. Glow sticks will be distributed.
Come to Christmas in downtown Huntington and enjoy a holiday afternoon together as a family.