A Ho-Ho-Host of events to jumpstart your holiday spirit
By Laurie Lenten
It’s shaping up to be a busy holiday season in the Northwoods with several communities offering plenty in the way of shopping and feasting, as well as enough yuletide merry-making to help you celebrate the season in style. Be sure to mark your calendar with one or all of these upcoming holiday events.
The Island City will kick off the holiday season on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 28, with the Minocqua Turkey Trot 5K Run/Walk. Families and friends are invited to join in on all the fun the Turkey Trot has to offer. New this year is a costume contest that will net the winner a medal along with bragging rights. So grab your costume and come trot through the streets and trails of Minocqua. Cost is $25 per person for early registration (before Nov. 22) and $30 on race day; or $80 for a family (up to five related family members) before Nov. 22, and $90 on race day. Checkin begins at 7 a.m. at Torpy Park, with the race starting at 9 a.m.
For more information or to register online log onto www.blueravenproductions.com/minocqua-turkey-trot.
“Christmas in Minocqua” will be held on Saturday, Nov. 30, from noon to 4 p.m., and will feature an afternoon filled with children’s activities, horse-drawn wagon rides, Santa and his reindeer, warm refreshments, the lighting of the downtown Christmas display and, of course, plenty of shopping opportunities.
Santa and Mrs. Claus will make their annual stop in downtown Minocqua at 1 p.m. when they arrive in a horse-drawn wagon at the Gaslight Square Shoppes. The pair will visit with children at Gaslight Square until 4 p.m. before leading the way to Veterans Park for caroling and the official lighting of the Minocqua Christmas display. Be sure to enjoy the downtown decorations, take a horse-drawn wagon ride, visit with Santa’s reindeer, and nibble on warm roasted chestnuts all while working your way through your holiday shopping list. Many of the Minocqua merchants are planning special activities and sales for the day. For more information, call the Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce at 715-356-5266, or log onto www.minocqua.org.
On Friday and Saturday, Nov. 29 and 30, Boulder Junction will host a variety of holiday events. The weekend will begin with the Boulder Junction Lioness Club’s 27th annual Christmas Craft Fair on Friday, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Boulder Junction Community Center. Pick up unique handmade holiday gifts, enjoy lunch by the Lioness’, and enter the drawing for cash raffle that will be held at 2 p.m. For more information, call Sue Gleason at 715-892-2784.
Enjoy some holiday shopping or catch a bite to eat before heading on over to the Friends of the Boulder Junction Public Library’s Cookie Walk, which will be held from 5 to 7:30 p.m. (or until all the cookies and treats are gone) in the lobby of the Acorn Lodge, located at 10370 Main Street in Boulder Junction. Choose from a huge assortment of fancy cookies, all-time favorites, and special holiday candies. For more information, call the Boulder Public Library at 715-385-2050.
Then it’s time for the 31st annual Christmas Walk, sponsored by the Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce, from 5 to 8 p.m. This evening event will include a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, carolers, sleigh rides, the lighting of the town and treats for shoppers at the local stores. For more information, call the Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce at 715-385-2400.
The holiday revelry will continue on Saturday, Nov. 30, with the annual Christmas Walk Kids Day, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., at the Boulder Junction Community Center. Kids will be able to do their holiday shopping at the Christmas Shopping House, enjoy a variety of kid-themed holiday activities, and top off the day with lunch with Santa and Mrs. Claus. For more information on these family-friendly holiday events, call the Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce at 715-385-2400, or log onto www.boulderjct.org.
Get into the holiday spirit early at the November Christmas Bazaar on Saturday, Nov. 9, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the St. Germain Community Center. The Bazaar includes a craft fair complete with fresh wreaths and garlands; a bake sale featuring cookies sold by the pound; a Holiday Gourmet Gift Corner; raffle prizes; children’s activities; and visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Proceeds from the November Christmas Bazaar go to benefit local youth programs. For more information, call Lois at 715-542-2881.
If you’re looking for a way to drop some of those extra Thanksgiving calories then the Jingle Bell Fun Run/Walk is just the thing. This fun event will be held on Saturday, Nov. 30, with race packet pick-up beginning at 2 p.m. and the race beginning at 4 p.m. This 3K event will start on the Bike and Hike Trail behind the St. Germain Chamber of Commerce office, wind around community roads and back to the Bike and Hike Trail. The Jingle Bell Run/Walk will be held whether it’s warm or cold, snow or no snow. Cost is $20 for children 14 and under; $30 for adults, and $70 per family (family of four – two adults/two children under age 14 and includes two race bags). Proceeds from the event will benefit the St. Germain Mission Possible Running Club.
After the race, you can ring in the Holiday season at the Lighting Up St. Germain Holiday Celebration, from 5 to 7 p.m. in downtown St. Germain. The holiday parade will begin at 5 p.m. and make its way to the Community Center and Fire Department where holiday revelers will enjoy caroling and lighting up the town Christmas tree. Free horse-drawn wagon rides will begin at 2 p.m. For more information on the Jingle Bell Fun Run/Walk or the Lighting Up St. Germain Holiday Celebration, call the St. Germain Chamber of Commerce at 715-477-2205, or log onto www.st-germain.com.
Santa’s Christmas for the Town will be held on Friday, Dec. 6, starting at 4 p.m. at the Manitowish Waters Community Center. Come on out and make Christmas crafts with the Camp Jorn staff while enjoying a wintertime meal of hot dogs, chili, hot cider and Christmas cookies baked by the Manitowish Waters Lioness Club. Santa will arrive at 5 p.m. and will light the outdoor Christmas light display at 6 p.m.
The Old Fashioned Christmas Tree Lighting will follow immediately after and will be held at Koller Park starting at 6 p.m. complete with bonfire, caroling, and plenty of hot dogs, chili, cookies and more. The Christmas Tree will be lighted by Santa at 6:30 p.m.
For more information on holiday events in Manitowish Waters, call the Manitowish Chamber of Commerce at 715-543-8488, or log onto www.manitowishwaters.org.
Laurie Lenten is a freelance writer who lives in Rhinelander. Her articles also appear in Northwoods Commerce, Northwoods ‘boomers and Beyond and Living on the Lake magazines.