MIDDLEPORT Pomeroy welcomed Santa Claus and Christmas to town Sunday, and Middleport will do the same this Saturday, with live holiday carols, horse-drawn carriage rides, an old-fashioned tree lighting in the town center, and a parade with Santa Claus arriving, too! This year, giving takes a large role in the holiday kickoff. Peoples Bank will accept food items for families in need of staples and treats for their holiday meals. The bank lobby at the corner of North Second Avenue and Race Street will be open after the parade, as always, to take free photos of Santa Claus and the neighborhood children. There will also be a treat for the children. But while families are visiting Santa at the bank, neighborhood bankers there hope families will bring a non-perishable food item in the spirit of giving to others. Live holiday music, caroling, and fortifying refreshments will round out the afternoons celebration, centered in the downtown shopping district. Holiday decorations line North Second, lighted snowflakes are twinkling and the villages public areas are decked out in bright red, green and gold. Carriage rides around The Christmas Village will begin at 3:30 p.m., from the bank lot, and they, too, are free, courtesy of the Middleport Community Association. Just before the parade, at 3:45 p.m., the Middleport Ministerial Association will lead a devotional service before lighting the downtown Christmas tree on the T. The Big Bend Community Band, directed by Toney Dingess, will perform holiday music from 4 to 4:30 p.m., and other singers are expected to contribute to the merry atmosphere. Middleport is never prettier than it is during the holiday season, Association President Debbie Gerlach said. Saturdays events are planned to get everyone in a happy mood for the holidays, and to remind them, too, that Middleport is a good place to start holiday shopping.