GALLIPOLIS, Ohio — The Field of Hope Community Campus is spreading Christmas cheer with an evening of holiday festivities for the community.
“We are hosting a Christmas celebration on Friday at the Colony Club,” said Candace Yongue, prevention manager. “It’s going to be [open] for the whole community.”
Yongue said the event will host special guests, Santa Claus and the Grinch.
“The Grinch is actually going to read, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” Yongue said. “And we have about 200 copies [of the book] for kids to take home with them.”
The night will start with a Christmas dinner with all the fixings — turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans and rolls, Yongue said.
“So, everybody’s going to have about an hour to come in and eat,” Yongue said. “We’re also going to play the [newest] Grinch movie while people are eating dinner.”
Yongue said dinner is optional and during that time folks are able to visit and talk to Santa Claus, as well as get their photo taken with him. They will also have the opportunity to have their face painted during this time.
The Grinch will make his appearance roughly an hour into the event.
After the Grinch reads his story, there will also be an opportunity to get pictures with the Christmas character.
The Gallia-Meigs Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services (ADAMH) Board will also have its “your presence is a present” photo booth setup, allowing families to get a family picture done, Yongue said.
Along with face painting, there will be a cookie decorating activity for kids.
“It should be a fun night,” Yongue said.
The event will last for two hours and people are welcome to come in whenever they can, Yongue said.
“They can [come], like any time throughout the dinner,” Yongue said. “If you want to come through line and get something, you can. It’s not something that’s going to happen like, bam, bam, bam. If people don’t want to eat dinner, they can still come at six and do Santa and face painting.”
Yongue said several local businesses and community members have made it possible to give out the books to children. She said there will also be a Zack and Scotty’s gift card and the Gallipolis Pawn Shop donated a movie to be given away during the event.
The Christmas event is a part of Field of Hope’s community events, where the nonprofit has tried to host an event in different areas in hopes of bringing local communities together and also as a part of the organization’s prevention program.
“Just trying to get the community involved… and get some education out of it,” Yongue said.
Field of Hope will have a table setup with information on their program and the Gallia County Health Department will have a table setup offering educational information on smoking and vaping. Both tables will be answering any questions people may have.
The event will be abiding by state COVID-19 guidelines, but encourages masks to anyone who feels more comfortable wearing them.
Yongue said Paint Creek Baptist Church has volunteered to assist with the food and cookie decorating, the ADAMH Board has also helped sponsor the event with Field of Hope. Yongue said she plans on having a list of book sponsors posted at the event to recognize the generosity.
Once again, the event takes place this Friday, Dec. 10, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Colony Club — 418 Second Avenue, Gallipolis, Ohio.
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Brittany Hively is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Follow her on Twitter @britthively; reach her at (740) 446-2342 ext 2555.