OHIO VALLEY — Though it seems to arrive earlier each year, the Christmas season is now indeed upon Gallia, Meigs and Mason counties.
This year, Ohio Valley Publishing has compiled a holiday events calendar filled with family-friendly activities across the readership area. From light shows, to tree lightings, to Christmas concerts and home tours, there is something for everyone who “needs a little Christmas,” starting this weekend and continuing through Jan. 1, 2020.
The second annual Christmas in Middleport themed tree display is located in the grass lot close to Dave Diles Park near the “T.” Schools, churches, organizations, memorials, causes and other themes were welcomed to be part of the display which will be up through the end of the year.
Saturday, Nov. 30
Experience the Middleport Christmas Parade at 6:30 p.m. (line up at 5:30 p.m. beside the former Dairy Queen building). Parade will end at The Blakeslee Center for s’mores, hot chocolate, and photos with Santa and the Grinch. A tree lighting ceremony is planned for 6 p.m. that evening near the “T.”
Sunday, Dec. 1
The annual Pomeroy Christmas Parade begins at 2 p.m. with line up at 1 p.m. at the Pomeroy baseball fields. Visit with Santa following the parade. Downtown businesses will have special shopping hours in conjunction with the parade and activities.
Get in the holiday spirit at the Reedsville Christmas Parade which begins at 2 p.m. with line up at 1:30 p.m. at Belleville Locks and Dam.
Monday, Dec. 2
The Reedsville Christmas tree lighting happens at 6:30 p.m. at Belleville Locks and Dam.
Saturday, Dec. 7
Travel back in time to Chester Courthouse’s Christmas Open House from noon to 3 p.m. with a performance by the Eastern Bell Choir at 1 p.m.
Racine’s Christmas in the Park returns with its lighted parade at 7 p.m. beginning at Southern High School and ending at Star Mill Park, line up is at the high school from 6:15 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. Hot chocolate, bonfire, lighting of all the trees in Star Mill Park following the parade. This will be the first year for the Christmas in the Park tree display.
Wednesday, Nov. 27
The annual Gallipolis In Lights official lighting ceremony, in Gallipolis City Park, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., with reindeer, local acts providing entertainment, fireworks, reworked displays and a surprise, said GIL Events Organizer Shari Rocchi. Gallipolis In Lights runs through New Year’s Day. Admission is free. In addition, this season appears to be a record year for entries into the “Tree Walk” which at press time was nearing 300. Live nativity scenes start Dec. 1.
The Our House museum of Gallipolis is preparing for its annual holiday open house event the night of the Gallipolis in Lights ceremony, with the museum looking to open its doors around 5 p.m. Docents and volunteers of the institution will be working to decorate every room in the theme and spirit of a Victorian Christmas. The facility will be dressed in fresh greenery among its holiday decor. Docents will be present throughout the building to answer questions about Gallipolis history and the history of the Our House tavern, itself. The museum is set to be lit by candlelight. Refreshments will also be available to visitors as part of the celebration. The event is free and open to the public.
Sunday, Dec. 1
Jonathan Hawkins performs in the Ariel Chamber Theatre, at the Ariel Opera House in Gallipolis. This is a free performance highlighting musical and folk traditions through the ages. Performance begins at 2 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 6
The French Art Colony’s annual Holiday Home Tour by candlelight takes place from 6-9 p.m. Tour decorated homes, churches and more in Gallipolis. Tour sites include: The FAC, 530 First Avenue; the Kessinger House, 613 First Avenue; the Lindegarde Home, 330 Third Avenue; the McQuirt-Brabham Home, 126 First Avenue; the Vertical Church, 25 Court Street; the Pasquale Home, 321 Fourth Avenue; the Our House Tavern Museum, 432 First Avenue. The FAC will serve as the ticket and hospitality center, allowing visitors on the tour to stop in and warm up with complimentary coffee and cookies. Enjoy the glass and painting exhibit on display by local artist Courtney Lowery. Call the FAC 740-446-3834 to purchase tickets.
Saturday, Dec. 7
The annual Gallipolis Christmas Parade, begins at 1 p.m., downtown Gallipolis. Celebrate the season with one of the area’s largest Christmas parades organized by the Gallia County Convention and Visitors Bureau (GCCVB). The theme this year, “North Pole Fantasy” was voted on by the community. According to a press release from the GCCVB, “In recognition of their dedication not only to the GCCVB, but our community, the 2019 Christmas Parade Marshal will be Holzer Health System.” Due to time constraints, the deadline to submit a registration form was Thursday, Nov. 14. Entries will not be accepted after this date. The inclement weather date is scheduled for Dec. 14 at 1 p.m.
The Ariel Opera House and the Ohio Valley Symphony are preparing for another round of holiday favorites with the symphony’s annual “Christmas Show!” with the performance slated for 7:30 p.m. Maestro Steven Huang will be serving as the evening’s conductor. Songs anticipated to be played during the concert include “Carol of the Bells,” “La Nuit de Noel,” “Charlie Brown Christmas” and more. The show will also feature the popular “Maestro for a Moment” contest, featuring candidates Dr. Randall Hawkins, Gallia Prosecutor Jason Holdren and Dr. Arthur Huntley. Tickets are required. Visit the Ariel online for tickets or call 740-446-ARTS.
Saturday, Dec. 14
The eighth annual Merry Tuba Christmas at the Ariel Opera House. This festive music experience begins at 2 p.m. This is a free concert.
Sunday, Dec. 15
Christmas on the Ridge, 5-7 p.m., Rio Ridge Venue, 43 Hill, Rio Grande. Meet and greet with Santa and Mrs. Claus, live nativity, make-and-take workshop, cookies and hot chocolate, elves, live reindeer. Free admission. Please bring a nonperishable food item for donation.
Saturday, Dec. 21
Attend “A Delightful Diva’s Christmas” featuring Phantom of the Opera star Geena Jeffries Mattox, with special guests Mark Parsons-Justice, Jonathan Hawkins and Emily Mattox. Show starts at 7 p.m., tickets are required. Visit the Ariel online for tickets or call 740-446-ARTS.
Sunday, Dec. 22
Enjoy the Sounds of Christmas free concert from the Ariel’s music students starting at 3 p.m. at the Ariel Opera House.
Christmas Fantasy Light Show, from 5:30-9 p.m., now through Dec. 31 at Krodel Park in Point Pleasant. Free admission. Donations appreciated to help fund the show. From Nativity scenes, to Santa Claus, to even Mothman, come visit this Christmas Light extravaganza. Drive around the park multiples times to take it all in.
Saturday, Nov. 30
The second annual “Trees in the Park” in the Town of Mason, held at the Stewart-Johnson V.F.W./Lottie Jenks Memorial Park. The public is invited to place either artificial or live decorated trees at the park from Nov. 30 until Dec. 7, where they will remain until after Christmas. There is no fee to participate, and the trees may be placed in memory or in honor of a loved one or friend.
Friday, Dec. 6
Point Pleasant Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting, Main Street and Gunn Park, Point Pleasant. Parade begins at 6 p.m. with lighting ceremony to immediately follow. Each year the City of Point Pleasant picks a large, live tree from the area, trucks it in and decorates it at Gunn Park. Following the Christmas Parade, a brief tree lighting ceremony complete with performances by junior high and high school choir and band members and more, takes place, ending with a countdown to the tree lighting. The lighting includes not only the city tree but the trees assembled in Gunn Park from the Light of Christmas tree project which benefits the Toys for Kids organization.
Christmas Light Show and Drive Thru begins tonight and continues through Dec. 15 at the West Virginia State Farm Museum, 1458 Fairground Road, Point Pleasant. Open 6-9 p.m., free admission. Drive or walk through this annual Christmas Light Show boasting over one million lights. Santa and hot chocolate available, nightly.
Saturday, Dec. 7
Enjoy the New Haven Christmas Parade which begins at 11 a.m. Santa will be at the fire station following the parade. The New Haven Fire Department Auxiliary Christmas Craft Show takes place from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Get in the holiday spirit at the Mason Christmas Parade at noon. Santa will be greeting visitors after the parade at the Mason Town Hall.
The Point Pleasant Volunteer Fire Department is hosting Breakfast with Santa at New Hope Bible Baptist Church at 107 Robinson Street, Point Pleasant. Breakfast will begin at 8 a.m. and the event will finish at noon. Children will have the opportunity to have their picture taken with Santa during the event. This is the first time the department has held the event and they will be asking for a suggested donation at the door. The donations will be used for daily operations for the fire department.
Christmas on the Frontier, Fort Randolph, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The fort is located at Krodel Park, Point Pleasant. Visitors can experience Christmas as celebrated on the colonial frontier this holiday season at this free event. This is the final event of the year presented by the Fort Randolph Committee. Refreshments will be provided. Reenactors will be dressed in 18th Century period clothing and will be discussing, as well portraying, Christmas traditions and customs on the frontier.
Saturday, Dec. 14
The annual Christmas party at the Letart Community Center will take place at 1 p.m. with a visit from Santa as well as games and crafts available. Please bring finger foods and drinks.
(Editor’s note: This story contains a listing of events currently submitted to Ohio Valley Publishing. To have a holiday event considered for free publication, email it to either the Gallipolis Daily Tribune at firstname.lastname@example.org, the Point Pleasant Register at email@example.com or The Daily Sentinel at firstname.lastname@example.org)