WARSAW — Even though Christmas is still more than a month away, the first holiday events in the area occur on Saturday, Nov. 18.
People may view them and a list of other Christmas events below, with more specific details on some of them to come.
To submit an item for a future list of Christmas events, email [email protected].
- The Akron Chamber of Commerce, Town of Akron and local churches present Illuminate on Saturday, Dec. 2. It’s from 5-6 p.m. at the Akron Town Square. An LED tree will be lit, and there will be hot chocolate, caroling and a visit from The Grinch.
- Santa will visit with kids at Heritage Park from 1-3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 16.
- North Webster’s annual Christmas tree lighting festivities start at 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 18. A variety of activities, free food and discounts at local businesses will be found around town. At Pilcher’s Shoe Store, the North Webster Community Public Library will be holding story time on the stage from 4:45-5 p.m. Story time will be followed a performance from the North Webster Elementary School choir, a sing-along with Clint Olson and a trumpet performance by Matt Murdock. Girl Scout Troop 57002 will host a craft table. Visitors can also create a Christmas button or make reindeer food at Pilcher’s. For activities around town, sleigh rides and pictures with Santa will be available at the firehouse from 4-5:30 p.m. Visit Tangibles Retail and Consignment for free chili starting at 4 p.m. and see a live reindeer from 5-7 p.m. The River Coffeehouse will provide free hot chocolate from their new coffee truck and a balloon arch photo area, with Pine Outdoor Apparel featuring an Elf on the Shelf for pictures. Jill and Jennifer’s Salon will be giving out free hot dogs and accepting donations for the North Webster Food Pantry. Roll N Smoke will also accept food pantry donations for $2 off purchases. Sue’s Creations will also be offering refreshments, giving out free carnations for ladies, and offering entry into a $100 drawing with a purchase during the event. The ATV Light Parade takes place at Pilcher’s at 5:45 p.m. The night of festivities also includes the tree lighting ceremony on Pilcher’s lawn at 6 p.m. More information and updates may be found on the North Webster-Tippecanoe Township Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook page at NWTTChamber.
- Pierceton’s Christmas parade lineup starts at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, at Pierceton Elementary School. The parade begins at 6 p.m. and will head to Brower Park on First Street. That will be followed by the lighting of the town’s Christmas decorations and hot cocoa and cookies at the park. People may then head to Harvest Community Church, 512 S. Seventh St., to visit with and get pictures with Santa and see a live Nativity scene.
- Rochester Downtown Partnership’s Holiday Stroll is 6-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1. It includes carolers, ice carving demonstrations, reindeer and an appearance from Santa.
- Santa Claus will be at the old fire station at 104 N. Jefferson St., Silver Lake, on Wednesday, Dec. 20. There will be refreshments and kids may visit with him then. He will travel around on a firetruck starting at 6 p.m., arriving at the station around 7 p.m.
- Chautauqua’s Old-Fashioned Christmas is Saturday, Nov. 25, at Oakwood Resort in Syracuse. Activities will start at 5:30 p.m. on the stage in front of the Oakwood Inn, which is earlier than in previous years. Members of the Wawasee High School Choir, the Chain Gang quartet and members of the Vocal Artists of Heartland Sings will kick things off. The Grinch will throw out green Grinch T-shirts from the stage at 6:05 p.m. Carols will be sung around the 50-foot Christmas tree, which will be lit at 6:15 p.m. following the big countdown. Then people may stroll up the lighted paths to see Santa and Mrs. Claus and take pictures with roaming characters, including Frosty, Rudolph, Buddy the Elf, a Toy Soldier and the Gingerbread Man. People may also hear the Christmas story read from the Bible and view a live Nativity scene. There will also be horse-drawn carriage rides, games for kids, hot chocolate and cookies and reindeer to pet. The event ends at 8 p.m.
- Warsaw Parks and Recreation Department’s Light Up the Night at Central Park is 6-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1. People may see the first lighting of the park display and kids will receive glow necklaces and goodie bags while supplies last.
- Main Street Warsaw’s Christmas event on Friday, Dec. 1, in conjunction with Light Up the Night runs from 5-8 p.m. The band Pick Slide will perform, and there will be food trucks, the lighting of a Christmas tree and visits with Santa at his house.
- Main Street Warsaw’s Twinkle Light Parade starts at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 15, with country gospel singer Susie McEntire and her husband Mark Eaton and Warsaw Mayor Joe Thallemer and his family as the grand marshals. MSW’s event for Third Friday runs from 5-8 p.m., including visits with Santa, hot chocolate, carolers, carriage rides and a Christmas market.
- The Village at Winona’s annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony is set for Saturday, Nov. 18. There will be plenty of activities from 3:30-6:30 p.m., including kids’ ornament making in the brick alley pavilion and train rides (in the LetterWood brick paver parking lot). Carolers will be making their way throughout the Village. From 5:30-6:15 p.m., there will be free cookies and hot chocolate, with Santa Claus available for visits. The Christmas tree by LetterWood is set to be lit at 6:15 p.m. People are asked to bring new, unwrapped toys for Toys for Tots as admission.
- Winona Lake Parks and Recreation Department’s Letters to Santa is returning for 2023. People may find forms at www.winonalake.net/home/news/letters-santa-2 for the letters and to include some background information on their kids to make the return letters more personalized. Forms should also be available outside of Winona Lake Town Hall or the parks’ department office starting on Monday, Nov. 20. The forms should be returned to the North Pole mailbox, which will be outside Winona Lake Town Hall starting on Nov. 20. If people cannot print off or pick up the special forms, they should include the personalized information and letters themselves. Letters and forms may also be mailed to Santa Claus C/O Town of Winona Lake, Winona Lake Limitless Park, 1590 Park Ave., P.O. Box 338, Winona Lake, IN 46590. People should not forget to include return address info. Letters and personal information must be received by 4 p.m. Monday, Dec. 4, to get a response back. The Letters to Santa program is free.
- The Winona Lake Parks and Recreation Department has Kringlefest from 1-3:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, at the Winona Heritage Room, 901 Park Ave. It includes a holiday shop where kids may buy $3 gifts for loved ones, face painting, train rides, reindeer to visit with, crafts, a photo booth, Santa and more. A sensory-friendly Santa experience is noon-12:30 p.m.