Happy Thanksgiving! The holiday season is underway and I am eager to share some of the events going on in Greenville in the next few weeks. I hope you will find something that sounds like fun for you and your family or friends. There is so much going on in just the next couple of weeks that I'm going to send another email later in the month with the rest of the events for December. Aren't we lucky to live somewhere with so much to do?
Uptown Forum is hosting their annual Friends and Family Open House and Artists' Market on Friday and Saturday, November 27th and 28th from 9:30 - 5:30. Local artists will be selling their creations, and the selection includes Christmas ornaments, food, Greenville photographs and gifts, handcrafted wood pieces, yard art, jewelry, lap quilts and more. I love this event every year and always come away with a stack of unique and very special Christmas gifts. In addition, Calico Cat will be hosting jewelry artists Jeff and Leigh Kohnfelder with their spectacular Obsidian jewelry coll
ection - thousands (yes, that's right) of pieces of bold sterling silver jewelry set with natural minerals, semi-precious stones and other delights.
On Friday only, Gary Woodall will be on-hand to play Christmas carols on the Highland bagpipes.
Reservations are still being accepted for Community Seeds Annual Christmas Dinner on Thursday, December 3rd, at 6:00 pm at the National Guard Armory. This is a remarkable charitable organization headquartered in Lone Oak but serving Hunt and Rains Counties. Their philosophy is to give a "Hand up, not a hand out" and they do it through education and professional training. I've seen some of the great work they do first-hand and look forward to supporting them. They will be serving a delicious prime rib dinner with all the trimmings. Individual tickets and corporate tables are available. Click on links for more information, then call 903-634-5673 or click here to make your reservations. I hope to see you there!
The Audie Murphy/American Cotton Museum invites you to step back in time during the month of December and enjoy the Dickens' Village scene that was recently donated to the museum. This exhibit has many pieces inspired by the best-loved of Dicken's novels, like Oliver Twist, David Copperfield and A Christmas Carol, as it portrays England as it was during Charles Dickens' lifetime. The exhibit will be on display through the month of December so don't miss it! The museum is open Tuesday-Saturday from 10 am - 5 pm.
On the first 3 Fridays in December (4th, 11th and 18th) at 7:00 and 8:00 pm: The Planetarium at Texas A&M University - Commerce presents "The Mystery of the Christmas Star." One of their most popular shows of the year, it explores the historical significance of the Biblical story of this brilliant star that led the Wise Men on their journey to the baby Jesus. You will be immersed in spectacular images while this show offers a scientific view of what the star of Bethlehem may have been. The planetarium is a perfect place to study this because of its ability to exactly reproduce the skies as seen from Bethlehem over 2,000 years ago. Here's a link to the trailer.
Saturday, December 5th from 9:00 am - noon is the 21st Annual United Presbyterian Church Cookie Walk. The church is located at 5905 Stonewall Street. If you want homemade cookies for Christmas, this is the place to go! You buy a small box for $5 and a large box for $12 and then fill them with your choice of cookies - and there will be a wide variety to choose from. The proceeds benefit the church's mission projects.
Now I ask you...do you REALLY want to join the crazies at the big box stores?
Santa's going to have a VERY busy day on December 5th....
He will be posing for free e-photos at Southwest Auto Mall each from November 27th to December 23rd from 11:30 am to 6:00 pm and weekday afternoons from 4:00 - 8:00 pm. Everyone is welcome to come and have a photo made. Here's the complete information, including his Saturday Storytime schedule. If you've got little ones who are still unsure about the whole Santa experience, this is a great place to go. There's no pressure to hurry and get the picture. It's just a warm and friendly experience with the Man in Red.
On Saturday, December 5th, He will also be at the Northeast Texas Children's Museum for their annual Brunch with Santa. The event takes place from 9:30 to 11:30 and includes a pancake breakfast. The museum is planning some Christmas crafts for the children, opportunities to write letters to Santa, and a chance to enjoy the exhibits, including the new Pirate Ship and Race Track. Bring your camera to capture a picture of your child with Santa. Advance tickets are $7 (call 903-886-6055) or $10 at the door on the day of the event.
Have a pet? On Saturday, December 5th, Turtle Creek Veterinary Clinic is hosting Pet Pictures with Santa from 1-3 pm. For a $10 donation to the Jingle Bowls Pet Food Campaign benefitting Hunt County Shared Ministries (FISH), you can have a phot0 made with Jolly St. Nick. Call 903-454-6222 to schedule an appointment and be sure you get in. Walk-ins are welcome, too, at the clinic, located at 5900 Jack Finney Blvd. Keli White Photography will be snapping the photos of your furry kiddos with Santa, and for your donation, you will receive a FREE 5x7 professional print, and the option to purchase more with guaranteed delivery in time for Christmas. There are more events that are part of Jingle Bowls. Check them out here.
The annual Greenville Christmas Parade is scheduled for Saturday, December 5th. This year, the parade begins at 6:00 pm in Downtown Greenville (this is a time change, folks!). Here's a rundown of the schedule:
* 10:00 am - "Sleigh Bells" ringing 5K. Participants will be given a set of bells to wear on their shoes as they run through downtown Greenville. 1st - 3rd place medals will be awarded in 7 different age divisions. Register by November 16th to be guaranteed an event T-shirt. Race will begin and end at Farmer's Market. For more information or to register, call 903-457-2994
* 2:00 - 5:00 pm. Enjoy lots of family fun with bounce houses, face painting, a gaming truck, cookie decorating and story time with Mrs. Claus.
* 2:00 - 5:00 pm. Hunt County Shared Ministries and Hooked on Giving present "Fill the Boat" with Professional Fisherman Rich Dalbey. Bring canned goods to help stock the shelves of the FISH pantry and meet Dalbey.
* 3:30 - 5:00 pm Home Depot presents Santa's Workshop which includes pictures with Santa
* 6:00 pm - Christmas "Parade of Lights". Bring food or cash donations to help "Fill the Float" for Hunt County Shared Ministries. They will start the parade with an empty float and hope that your generosity means the float will be filled by the end.
* 7:20 pm - The lighting of the Christmas Tree, followed by a fireworks show (yes, fireworks over Market Square. How wonderful!)
* 7:45 pm - Greenville FFA Toy Drive Concert featuring Doug Stone and John David Kent with special guest, Santa Claus. Please bring unwrapped toys to help these hardworking students. Admission to the concert is free with a 2-toy donation.
Altrusa Tour of Homes - Sunday, December 6th from 1-5 pm. One of the best annual events in town! Enjoy beautiful holiday decorations at 6 outstanding homes in the Greenville area on this tour that benefits Hunt County Special Olympics. A reception will be held at Wesley Methodist Church, 5302 Business Hwy 69, where you can enjoy refreshments, entertainment, shopping, a silent auction and prize drawings. Advance tickets are $15 ($18 the day of the tour), and available in advance at Greenville Floral & Gifts, 6008 Wesley St, at Wesley Methodist Church on the day of the event, or from any Altrusa Club member. Here's a downloadable copy of this year's tour brochure with descriptions of the homes on the tour.
On Friday and Saturday, December 11th and 12th and again on the 18th and 19th, the Park Street Wagon Rides will roll through this beautifully-decorated neighborhood. This unique activity has been going on in Greenville for many years and is one of my favorite things to do during the holidays. That's because for the 45 minutes it takes to ride the wagon, you can't go faster than the speed of a horse and I find that I slow down, breathe, and take in the lights. The wagons depart from the Park Street Baptist Church parking lot between 6:00 and 9:00 pm each night but be sure you're there to purchase your tickets ($8:00 per person, which includes a cookie and drink) no later than 8:00 pm. Last year I got there just after 8 on the last night and the rides were sold out! You can enjoy entertainment, hot chocolate and sweet treats while you wait - each ticket includes two items from the concession tables. Babies held in your lap ride free. All proceeds collected during the events go to the Park Street Historical Association, a neighborhood organization devoted to preserving the historical importance of Park Street in Greenville. This is SO worth the time and the money!
Tree on the Hill Pottery will have its Open Studio Sale on Sat, December 12th 10am - 5pm at 9425 CR 4214, Greenville, TX 75401. Potter John Hill makes some wonderful pieces and is a well-known local artist. If you haven't seen the process, it's interesting to tour John's studio and see the pottery wheels and kilns. And of course the pottery! Which make wonderful Christmas gifts. Call John at 903-355-0341 for more information.
Another part of the festivities on Park Street, the annual Park Street Lantern Parade, is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 12th. There is no charge to participate in the event. Those who do take part often dress in Victorian costumes during the pedestrian and/or equestrian event, but it's not necessary. You are encouraged to bring a candle-powered lantern if you have one to add to the atmosphere. The parade starts at the Park Street Baptist Church parking lot and winds through the historic neighborhood.
Saturday, December 12th promises more fun when A/C Brokers LLC host the Second Annual Ugly Sweater Christmas Party from 7:00 pm - midnight at Oak Creek Country Club. The party benefits Women In Need this year. Oak Creek Country Club is located at 969 Jack Finney Blvd. - right next to L-3. Admission is free, but donations are welcome - it IS a benefit, after all. Attendees must be 21 or older. Click here for a full-size copy of the flyer, then dig out your ugly Christmas sweater and get ready to have a great time!
Last year, it was moved from Friday to Saturday to avoid conflicting with another event downtown and the response was better that anyone expected...so a new tradition was born. This year, a whole day of events is being planned in Downtown, mainly at Market Square, and this is really exciting!
Enjoy some classical Christmas music on Sunday, December 13th at 2:00 pm. when the Wesley UMC Chancel Choir and the Greenville High School choir will be performing John Rutter's "Gloria!" The combined voices of both groups promise a memorable concert guaranteed to offer a break from the crazy commercialism of the holidays and remind us what the season is all about. The concert will take place at Wesley United Methodist Church.
And finally, if the holidays aren't complete without a performance of the Nutcracker Ballet, you're in luck! Studio A Presents: 6th Annual Nutcracker on Sunday, December 13th at 2:30 p.m., in the Greenville Municipal Auditorium. Reserved seats are $6-$11, and available to order here, but there is also plenty of free seating. All ages are welcome - and it promises to be a delightful afternoon (this is a really good production, folks!).
And here's a few events coming later in the month that you'll want to make plans to attend:
The Greenville ISD Bands Holiday Concert is December 17th at 7pm at the Municipal Auditorium. Sixth grade and middle school bands will be performing and the high school band will be featured. The theme is "holidays from around the world."
If you're looking for a traditional bit of Christmas music, make plans to attend the Michael Londra Celtic Christmas show at the Texan Theater on Saturday, December 19th. Emmy® nominated, Irish singer-songwriter, Michael Londra is a star of stage and screen, having been featured in the US National Tour of "Riverdance" as the lead singer. I can't think of a better way to celebrate the holidays than a festive dinner and evening of beautiful music at the everything-included Texan Theater. They have other shows this holiday season, including a special New Year's Eve event featuring The Hit Men (former stars of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons). Tickets and information on all events can be found at TexanTheaterGreenville.com.
Whew! That's just the activities through the middle of December! Please plan to take some of them in - you'll enjoy the holidays and the special magic they have in Greenville!
Because there are so many things going on in the community this year, I am going to send out two newsletters in December to co
ver everything. Look for another email sometime next week with even more great adventures!
Please don't forget, if you know of something that I need to include in this newsletter or on the Housewarmers of Greenville Facebook page, please email me the details of the event.
Housewarmers of Greenville
P.S. If you find this newsletter helpful, please share it with your friends!