Christmas in Abilene 2022

By LORETTA FULTON

It’s official! The 2022 Christmas season is underway, with concert music, light displays, Living Nativity scenes, opera, a Christmas parade, and more festivities. 

Following is a partial list of upcoming Christmas events. To add to the list, send information to editor@spiritofabilene.com

ABILENE COMMUNITY BAND CHRISTMAS CONCERT
The Abilene Community Band will present its Christmas concert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 13, at the Paramount Theater. Admission is free. Donations will be accepted for the band’s endowment fund. Traditional and contemporary Christmas music will be performed.

CSC CHRISTMAS STORE OPEN

The annual Christmas Store at Christian Service Center will be open on select days through Dec. 16. The store is located in the service center building, 3185 N. 10th St.

The store will be open 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on the following days: Dec. 7, 9, 14, and 16

OUR SAVIOR LUTHERAN LIVING NATIVITY

Our Savior Lutheran Church, 4933 S. Seventh St., will stage its annual Living Nativity Dec. 20 and 21. Performances will be at 7 and 7:45 p.m. each night. Seating is available on the west side of the church, or guests may watch from their cars.

2022 WINTER LIGHTFEST 

The 2022 Winter Lightfest, a visual feast sponsored by the United Way of Abilene in partnership with Christmas Décor by Lone Star Electric, will be bigger and better than ever this year. Winter Lightfest is in its fourth year, and is located at 2250 E.N. 10th St. Lightfest features a ¾-mile paved walking path through more than 3 million lights, with photo ops, a virtual reality experience, Santa, hot chocolate, s’mores and more!

Winter Lightfest will be open Fridays through Sundays Nov. 25-27, Dec. 2-4, 9-11, and 16-18. During Christmas week, the Lightfest will be open Dec. 19-23. Hours are 6-10 p.m., with the last entry granted at 9 p.m. The parking lot opens at 5:30 p.m. Order tickets online. 

GRACE MUSEUM CHRISTMAS EVENTS

A family Christmas evening will be held 5:30-8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 8, at the Grace Museum. Events, which are free, include holiday make-n-take projects in the third-floor education classroom, historical period crafts and ornaments on display in the third-floor history gallery, photos with Santa in the ballroom on the first floor, and a Holiday Market in the ballroom and loggia on the first floor. Showcones will be set up outside on North First Street will feature hot chocolate and other treats. 

LIVE RADIO PLAY AT THE PARAMOUNT

KACU presents its second annual live radio play, “A Christmas Carol,” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 7, at the Paramount Theater. Click here to purchase tickets.

ACU CHRISTMAS VESPERS

Abilene Christian University choirs will present “When Heaven Comes to Earth,” a Christmas Vespers service, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, at First Baptist Church, 1333 N. Third St. 

The free event will include liturgy, scripture, music, and poetry. 

WYLIE BAPTIST LIVING CHRISTMAS TREE
Wylie Baptist Church, 6097 Buffalo Gap Road, is celebrating its 40th annual Living Christmas Tree Dec. 8-11.

Theme is “King of Glory.” Tickets are free, but required. They can be picked up at the church or reserved by calling 692-3206. Presentation times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 11. 

HEAVENLY REST BAROQUE CHRISTMAS CONCERT AND ADVENT WALK

Choirs will join their voices with the church organ for A Baroque Christmas concert at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, at the Episcopal Church of the Heavenly Rest, 602 Meander St.

Works by Handel, Bach, Pachelbel, and vivaldi will be featured. The concert is free to the public. Featured choirs will be from Heavenly Rest and McMurry and Hardin-Simmons universities. 

The church also will host an Advent Walk, beginning with supper at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 14, in Gerhart Hall. After the meal, guests will be guided through contemplative prayer stations, using the colors and scents of the season, accompanied by quiet music. The public is invited to the free event. 

HANDEL’S MESSIAH
The Abilene Opera Association presents Handel’s Messiah at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 11, at the Paramount Theater.

A live orchestra will be conducted by David Itkin, director of the Abilene Philharmonic Orchestra. The Abilene Chamber Singers will be directed by Joshua Wright. Soloists include Jennifer Youngs, Lynnette Chambers, Samuel Cook, and Jeffrey Snider. An Afterglow Party will be held outside following the presentation. Click here to purchase tickets.

CHRISTMAS AT THE ZOO
A Christmas Celebration, sponsored by Reliant, will be held at the Abilene Zoo Dec. 16-23.
Hours are 4-9 p.m. each day. The celebration will feature Santa and his reindeer, ice skating, walking through immersive light displays, a professional ice sculpture show, and a live nativity. 

AARON WATSON FAMILY CHRISTMAS

An Aaron Watson Family Christmas concert will be staged at 7:30 p.m. two nights, Dec. 22 and 23, at the Paramount Theater. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Love & Care Ministries.

“This is going to be a show unlike any of my others,” Watson said. “I’m going to play some of y favorite Christmas songs and a few of my originals. It will be a special evening for the entire family.” Click here to purchase tickets

CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING

The annual city Christmas tree lighting ceremonies will begin at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 28, with Revolution Strings providing music. The outdoor tree lighting will begin at 6 p.m. on the front lawn of City Hall, with Mayor Anthony Williams presiding. 

ANNUAL CITY SIDEWALKS EVENT

Each year, the Abilene Downtown Association gets the season off to a jolly good start with City Sidewalks, which includes the FOX West Texas Christmas Lights Parade, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 29. The route runs along Pine Street to North Fourth Street and down Cypress Street. More than 100 floats, plus marchings bands, will entertain guests. The Abilene Community Band will play underneath the marquee at the Paramount Theater. Music begins at 5:30 p.m. Vendors will be set up along Cypress Street. Click here for a lineup of musical performances. 

HOWARD PAYNE AND COMMUNITY BAND CONCERT IN BROWNWOOD

Howard Payne University’s Symphonic Band and the Central Texas Community Band will present a community Christmas concert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 29, in HPU’s Mims Auditorium. The concert is free to the public. 

CHRISTMAS IN THE GARDEN

The Abilene Cultural Affairs Council presents, “Narnia,” as this year’s Christmas in the Garden event. Two performances will be presented at 5 and 6:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2. Both will be in the Adamson-Spalding Storybook Garden by the Convention Center. Cost is $10 per family.

The presentations will include a book reading with the White Witch, costumed characters, a snow machine, magick live music, and Narnia-themed refreshments and crafts. Click here to purchase tickets and for more information.

JOURNEY TO BETHLEHEM

Zion Lutheran Church, 2801 Antilley Road, presents Journey to Bethlehem at 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3. A hymn sing will be held, followed by a soup supper. 

ABILENE PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA

The orchestra will perform two Christmas concerts on Saturday, Dec. 3. “Home for the Holidays” matinee for families begins at 3 p.m. The evening program begins at 7:30 p.m. Click here for ticket information.

ALDERSGATE CHRISTMAS CANTATA

Aldersgate United Methodist Church will present a Christmas cantata at 9:30 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 4, in the church sanctuary, 1741 Sayles Blvd. 

FIRST CENTRAL PRESBYTERIAN CANTATA AND ADVENT FAIR

First Central Presbyterian Church, 400 Orange St., will have a big day on Sunday, Dec. 4. A Christmas Cantata will take place during the Sunday moring worship at 11 a.m. The youth of the church will have an Advent Fair from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. The fair will feature music, cake auction, and a Christmas Market. 

FEAST OF SHARING

The annual Feast of Sharing, hosted by HEB grocery stores, will be held Tuesday, Dec. 6, at the Abilene Convention Center, 1100 N. Sixth St. Serving for the free meal will be 4 to 8 p.m.

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