Additional Christmas Activities, Cancelations
By LORETTA FULTON
Outdoor Christmas activities may be more popular than ever this year as people are looking for reasons to get out of the house and put thoughts of COVID-19 behind them for a while.
Following is a partial list of upcoming events and cancelations. To add to the list, email firstname.lastname@example.org
The annual Christmas parade normally held the Tuesday after Thanksgiving was canceled this year, but special events, sponsored by the Abilene Downtown Association, will be held throughout December. Among them will be a 5K run, children’s garden party, pet day, adult pub crawl, outdoor Las Posadas procession, Christmas movies and more. For a map, dates, times, and details of all the activities, go to abilenedowntown.com/city-sidewalks
The newly designed Winter Lightfest, sponsored by the United Way of Abilene, kicked off Nov. 27 and continues through December at 2250 E.N. Tenth St. Gates open at 6 p.m. nightly. Final admission is at 9 p.m. The event will be open Fridays through Sundays Nov. 27-Dec. 13, Dec. 18-23, and Dec. 26. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for students and free for children under age 2. For more information, go to www.unitedwayabilene.org/winterlightfest
CHRISTMAS AT THE ZOO
A six-night Christmas celebration will be presented at the Abilene Zoo Dec. 18-23. From 4-10 p.m. each day, visitors to the zoo will be able to explore lighted Christmas displays, meet with Santa and his reindeer and enjoy live Christmas music. Ice skating will begin each half hour. General admission is $15 for non-members and $7 for members. Admission is free for children ages 2 and younger. For more information and to register, go to www.abilenezoo.org
FEAST OF SHARING
The second part of the H.E.B Feast of Sharing will be a drive-thru from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Dec. 17 in the north parking lot of the Abilene Convention Center, 1100 N. Sixth St. The free meal will include turkey, green beans, and mashed potatoes. A similar event was held Nov. 4.
According to H.E.B., guests can enter the drive-thru lane at North Seventh and Pine streets before going through the line, then exiting onto either Cedar or North Eighth Street. Guests are asked to wear a mask and practice social distancing.
A popular Christmas tradition that won’t be held this year is the Living Christmas Tree at Wylie Baptist Church. The tradition began in 1982 and was halted this year due to COVID-19. However, a Christmas Celebration will be held in its place Dec. 10-13 at the church, 6097 Buffalo Gap Road. The title of the presentation is “Where Are You Christmas?”
“We will feature the WBC Worship Choir and have limited drama (will be a very moving Nativity scene) and a couple other surprises,” Rick Grant, minister of music, wrote in an email.
Tickets to the free productions will be limited to allow for safe-distancing in the sanctuary. Tickets will be required to enter. No walk-ups will be allowed. Call the church, 692-3206, for tickets.
Thursday, Dec 10….7:30 p.m.
Friday, Dec 11……….7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Dec 12…..7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Dec 13……10:30 a.m.
BREAKFAST WITH SANTA
Southern Hills Church of Christ, 3666 Buffalo Gap Road, is sponsoring a drive-through Breakfast With Santa 9-10 a.m. Dec. 12.
“We’ll provide breakfast, crafts, a photo opportunity with Santa, and more–all done in a drive-through format. And it’s all free~!” according to information from the church.
The church will provide individually packaged donuts and juice, crafts for children to do at home, and links to Christmas stories that can be watched from any device.
“Of course, our final station will provide an opportunity for parents to snap a fun, socially distanced picture of their child with Santa:) All are invited to this free come-and-go event!”
For more information, go to www.sohillschurch.org/santa
FA LA LA IN THE FOREST
The annual Fa La La in the Forest will begin at 6 p.m. Dec. 12 at Abilene State Park. Campers will be asked to decorate their site with Christmas lights. Guests can drive through to see the decorated campsites. The entrance fee will be waived during those hours but donations will be accepted. For camping reservations, go to https://tpwd.texas.gov/
A 17-piece orchestra will give two performances, at 3 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5, from First Baptist Church, 1333 N. Third St. Guest vocalist Sara Kennedy will be accompanied by Philharmonic conductor David Itkin on piano. To purchase tickets for the in-person concert, call 325.677.6710. Livestream tickets are available on the website, www.abilenephilharmonic.org. For any questions email email@example.com or call 325.677.6710
Loretta Fulton is creator and editor of Spirit of Abilene