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Christmas Countdown

Area holiday happenings

A listing of seasonal events throughout north central Iowa

November 18, 2012
Compiled by Joe Sutter and Jody Castor , Messenger News


November/December, Saturdays and Sundays: POW Museum open 1 to 4 p.m.

Nov. 23: Santa Claus Day

Dec. 1: Santa's Family Workshop, 1 to 3 p.m., United Methodist Church .

Dec. 2-31: POW Nativity Scene, Kossuth County Fairgrounds, open 2 to 9 p.m. weekdays and Saturdays; noon to 9 p.m. Sundays and Christmas day; closes at 6 p.m. on Dec. 31. The internationally known Kaib Nativity The scene of half-sized figures was crafted by German prisoners of war while they were interned at the Algona POW Camp in 1945.

Dec. 8-9: Santa Land, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., other times by appointment, at 1301 210th St., vintage trees, lights and decorations plus several Santa Clauses displayed in a Victorian home.

Dec. 8, 15, 20, 22: Visit Santa in his house at State 5 Theatre, 315 E. State St., Saturdays 1 to 2:30 p.m. and Dec. 20 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.


Nov. 23-Dec. 21: Chamber of Commerce Wrap it Up in Bancroft shopping promotion. Shoppers in Bancroft can win Bancroft Bucks each week.

Nov. 25: Many Voices Christmas Choral Concert and Soup Supper at St. John's Catholic Church, 3 p.m.


Dec. 3: Elementary and Middle School concert, 7 p.m., high school gym.

Dec. 10: High School concert 7:15 p.m. at Webster City auditorium.

Dec. 15: Christmas program 7 p.m., Missionary Alliance Church.


Dec. 15: Santa Claus Day, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Bode Community Center; Santa arrives at noon. Chili and chicken noodle soup, and hot dogs will be served for a freewill donation. Bake sale, ham and turkey raffle, tickets available at the door.

Dec. 19: Christmas Lights Contest judging. Cash prizes, sign up at City Hall.


Dec. 1: Burt Business Appreciation Christmas Coffee and Lions Club Santa Day, 1 to 3 p.m., Burt Activity Complex. Coffee,

hot chocolate and cookies will be served with drawings for prizes. Santa will be on hand to visit with the children and distribute bags of candy. The Burt Fire Department will also be giving fire truck rides.

Dec. 2: Burt and Lone Rock Presbyterian Churches annual "Christmas in the Barn" starting at 4:30 p.m. at the Mark and Mary Behrends residence, 604 370th St., Lone Rock.

Dec. 7: Burt Public Library Holiday Open House; Coffee, hot cider and cookies will be served from 3 to 5:30 p.m. along with prizes.

Dec. 9: Burt Presbyterian Church Christmas Caroling starts at 5 p.m. followed by a potluck at 6 p.m.

Dec. 14: Security State Bank will be serving coffee, hot cider and cookies all day at the bank, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Dec. 16: Burt Presbyterian Church Children's Christmas program, 4 p.m.

Dec. 24: Burt Presbyterian Church Candlelight Service, 5 p.m.

Dec. 24: St. John's Lutheran Church Children's Christmas program, 6 p.m.


Dec. 1: Christmas Fair and luncheon, 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Our Saviour's Lutheran Church.


Dec. 9: Christmas Open House, 5 to 7 p.m. Clare Public Library. Meal served for freewill offering, children can decorate cookies. Santa arrives around 6:30 p.m. with presents for the children. Anyone bringing a decorated Christmas tree picture for

the children to pick up will receive a gift certificate for a free DVD rental.


Dec. 1: Jingle Jam Kids' Gift Shoppe, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., Clarion Library.

Dec. 1, 8, 15: Holiday Free Merchant Movie, 11 a.m., Clarion Theatre.


Nov. 22 until Christmas day: Hillside Spectacular, lighted daily at 5:15 p.m., 202 Second St. S.


Today: Lions Club Blue Mound Turkey Dinner, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Community Center.

Nov. 23-Dec. 30: Festival of Lights, Oak Park.

All of December: Commercial decorating contest; residential holiday lighting contest.

Dec. 7-8: Dayton business open houses, drawing for hams.

Dec. 15, 22: Santa at Festival of Lights, 5 to 7 p.m., Oak Park.


Nov. 25: Breakfast with Santa, 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., community center. Santa will be there from 9 to 11 a.m. Cost is $5; children 12 and younger are admitted free. Sponsored by the Duncombe Fire Department.


Dec. 1: An Old-Fashioned Eagle Grove Christmas, United Methodist Church. At 5 p.m., there will be an elf costume contest, awards given for kids in different age categories; 5 to 6:30 p.m., free soup supper in the fellowship hall; 5:30 p.m., tree lighting ceremony; 7 p.m. Community Christmas concert.

Dec. 2: Eagle Grove Chorale winter concert, 3 p.m., Methodist Church

Dec. 12: Stores open until 8 p.m. for special shopping event.

Dec. 15: Breakfast with Santa, contact the Eagle Grove Memorial Library to make reservations, 448-4115

Dec. 15-16: Festival of Trees, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 15; 1 to 3:30 p.m. Dec. 16, Memorial Hall full of decorated trees. No charge.

Dec. 16: Tour of Homes, 1 p.m. Sponsored by the Historical Society, maps available at the Festival of Trees (Memorial Hall).

Dec. 17: 5:30 - 6:30 Craft Night, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., Eagle Grove Library.


Nov. 20: Mystery Santa Contest begins. Match the right Santa with each business for an opportunity to win $200 in Chamber Bucks.

Nov. 21: Firemen's Feather Party at the VFW.

Nov. 24: Breakfast with Santa at the Pizza Ranch 9 to 10:30 a.m., hosted by the Pizza Ranch and The Reporter and Democrat.

Nov. 24 : Holiday Gathering at the Wild Rose, 6 to 8 p.m.. Enjoy photos with Santa, Mrs. Claus and their little helper. Holiday Carols provided by the Cornbelt Chorus, as well as a tree-lighting ceremony.

Nov. 28: Scandinavian Tea, 1 to 4 p.m., Bethany Lutheran Church.

Nov. 29: Emmetsburg seventh- and eighth-grade Holiday Concert, 7:30 p.m.

Nov. 30: Home for the Holidays Lighted Holiday Parade, 6 p.m. followed by Open House at the Chamber of Commerce featuring Santa and Mrs. Claus; horse-drawn hayrides by the Pony Express, music by the Biblical Brass and Beyond, hot cocoa and treats

Nov. 30-Dec 2, Dec. 7-9: Main Street Community Theatre presents its holiday production, "Grapes of Wrath." Tickets are $10. Curtain times are 8 p.m. for Friday and Saturday; 2 p.m. for Sunday performances.

Dec. 1: Santa's Secret Shop hosted by the Emmetsburg Progress Club, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., Smith Wellness Community Room. Bring young children to do their shopping without their parents' assistance.

Dec. 1-24: Emmetsburg Retail Association's 25 Days of Christmas Open Houses with treats, prize drawings and more.

Dec. 6: Emmetsburg kindergarten through first grade Holiday Concert, 7 p.m.

Dec. 9: Catholic Daughters of the Americas pancake breakfast cooked by the Kiwanis, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Dec. 9: Glenn Henriksen in concert at Bethany Lutheran Church with soup supper to follow.

Dec. 11: Emmetsburg fifth- and sixth-grade Band Concert, 12:15 p.m.

Dec. 16: Emmetsburg High School Holiday Concert, 2 p.m.

Dec. 21: The Christmas Story Pageant, 10:30 a.m., presented by Emmetsburg Catholic School first-, seventh- and eight-graders, Holy Family Parish immediately followed with caroling at 11:50 a.m.

Dec. 31: Dinner and a show with Musical Impressionist Scott Record. Two shows.


Nov. 26: Holiday lighting, 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Plaza, Ninth Street and Central Avenue, sponsored by the GFDGA and SSMID. Santa will arrive in a fire truck, hay rides, a store window decorating contest and events in the Wakhonsa Apartments. The FDSH and St. Edmond choirs and the Harmony Brigade will perform.

Nov. 27: Ladies Night Out, 5 to 8 p.m. at downtown businesses, sponsored by the Downtown Divas.

Dec. 1: Creative Christmas Cookies/Candies walk, 9 a.m., Trinity United Methodist Church,

Dec. 2: Fort Dodge Area Symphony Concert, "Messiah Sing-along," 3 p.m., Phillips Middle School; Yule Walk to follow. Concert tickets are $10 at the door. Yule Walk tickets $15 in advance at Design Two, 1109 Central Ave., or CSBank, 130 N. 29th St.

Dec. 8-9, 14-16, 21-23: Lights at Kennedy, 6 to 9 p.m. Kennedy Park campground, $5 per car, sponsored by Noon Sertoma. Live nativity scene Sunday evenings.

Dec. 9: Ringland-Smeltzer Christmas open house, 2 to 5 p.m., snow date is 5 to 7:30 p.m. Dec. 11. Free to the public, first and second floors are open and decorated

Dec. 14-16: Hawkeye Community Theatre, "Why Penguins Can't Fly," 7 p.m. Dec. 14 and 15, with matinee at 2 p.m., Dec. 16.

Dec. 16: Fort Dodge Choral Society presents "Sing We Now of Christmas, " 2 p.m. reception and refreshments, 2:30 p.m. carol sing-along, 3 p.m. concert, First United Methodist Church.


Dec. 8: Citywide Winter Fun Day, 1 to 7 p.m. downtown. Craft show, horse-drawn sleigh rides, functions at the library, tree lighting ceremony and caroling at 5:30 p.m., house lighting contest, soup supper at Gilmore City cafe. Santa will be there.


Nov. 24: Card lighting, 5:30 p.m. at the town park. Santa Claus will come, pass out goodies and light the Christmas cards in the town park.


Now through Dec. 8: Wreath Raffle. View the wreaths at Lee Benson Motors weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays 8 a.m. to noon. Drawing for raffle is Dec. 8 at 1 p.m.

Nov. 24: UpStream Ministries ReThink Christmas Sale, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Gowrie Community Center. Second-hand sale with all proceeds going to help those in need this Christmas.

Dec. 1: Holiday Tour of Homes, 1 to 4 p.m.

Dec. 1: United Methodist Church Christmas Coffee and Bazaar, 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. Includes a cookie walk, baked goods featuring Swedish rye bread, broomcorn wreaths and rag rugs.

Dec. 7-8: Gowrie Holiday Open House Weekend.

Dec. 7: Webster-Calhoun Holiday Open House with cider, cookies and door prizes.

Dec. 8: Homebased Business Open House, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lee Benson Motors. Drawing for Wreath Raffle at 1 p.m.

Dec. 8: Free Skate with Santa sponsored by the Gowrie Development Commission and POET Ethanol. Second grade and younger skate from 1 to 2:30 p.m.; older than second grade, from 2:30 to 4 p.m.

Dec. 9: Chili Supper at 5:30 p.m., Jive for Five Concert at 7 p.m. at Gowrie Lutheran Church, sponsored by the Gowrie Area Arts Council.

Dec. 16: Christmas Lighting Contest sponsored by Gowrie Development Commission and Gowrie Municipal Utilities.


Dec. 22: Santa at Community Center, 10 a.m.


Nov. 23 until Christmas day: Kiwanis Christmasland, First Avenue South, open 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. and 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on weekends; open every evening 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Dec. 1 until Christmas day: Faith United Methodist Church Tree Walk, Second Avenue North, open daily 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.


Dec. 1: Christmas Festival at the Lake City Square; 4 p.m., carriage rides on the square; 5 p.m., marshmallow roast and caroling on the square; 6 p.m., parade and festival of lights featuring Santa Claus; 7:30 p.m., movie at the Capri Theater.

Dec. 1: Christmas Open Houses in Lake City all day on the square.

Dec. 4: Stewart Memorial Community Hospital Auxiliary Annual Christmas Tea, 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.

Dec. 5: Holiday Homemade Candy Sale at Stewart Memorial Community Hospital, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.


Dec. 8: Christmas in Lake View, 3 to 5 p.m. Santa will be talking with children at the American Legion Hall; 3 to 5 p.m.. Emmanuel Lutheran Church kids can participate in craft projects; 3 to 4:30 p.m., horse-drawn carriage rides around town; 5 to 5:30 p.m., bonfires will be lit in Main Street near the American Legion Hall; 5:30 to 6 p.m., a free soup supper at the American Legion Hall; 6 to 7 p.m., bingo at the American Legion Hall.


Dec. 15: Santa Days, 10 a.m. at the Livermore American Legion. The city of Livermore is hosting Light up Livermore for residents to decorate their homes. First-, second- and third-place winners will be given credit on their electric bill. Judging will be the week before Christmas, from Dec. 17 to 22.


Nov. 25: Lohrville Volunteer Fire Department's Annual Omelet Breakfast, 8 a.m. to noon at the Community Building.

Nov. 30: Kick off to Christmas, 5:30 p.m. at the library including Santa, carols, tree lighting and meal.

Dec. 3: South Central Calhoun Fourth-Grade Music Concert 6:30 p.m., Middle School Auditorium (Rockwell City).

Dec. 13: South Central Calhoun High School Christmas Concert, 7:30 p.m., High School Gym (Lake City).


Dec. 6: Christmas Concert for kindergarten through sixth grade, 7 p.m., Lu Verne Elementary School.

Dec. 13: Christmas Concert, 7 p.m. for seventh- through 12th-graders, Corwith Wesley Middle School/High School Gym.


Dec. 2: Hometown Christmas Celebration, 3:30 to 6 p.m., MACCenter (former Manson Elementary School). Visit and pictures with Santa; Christmas craft projects for kids including tree decorations, cards and gift items; bouncy house, face painting, cookie walk and carnival-type games. Shopper's Square featuring home based and specialty business booths. A selection of candles, gifts, specialty foods and kitchenware, jewelry, purses and baked goods will be available for holiday shopping. Free of charge, all activities hosted and sponsored by Chamber members.


Nov. 25: Holiday Celebration at the Library Community Center featuring tour of lights, chili feed, and Santa and his elves.


Dec. 1: First Christian Church Cookie Walk and Bake Sale, 9 to 11 a.m., First Christian Church.

Dec. 1: Chamber-Main Street "Making Holidays Happen," 1 to 4 p.m., the Townhouse.

Dec. 1: Lions Club pictures with Santa and food drive for the hungry, 1 to 4 p.m., the Townhouse.

Dec. 2: Tree Lighting Memorial, 2 p.m., Farber Otteman Funeral Home.

Dec. 3: Concert at Sac City United Methodist Church featuring Nashville pianist and comedian Brian Hanson, doors open at 6:30 p.m. and concert starts at 7 p.m., traditional Christmas favorites from the past and present, Christmas sing-a-long and laughs.

Dec. 7: United Bank of Iowa Annual Holiday Open House, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Dec. 8: Chamber-Main Street "Making Holidays Happen" Christmas movie at the library, 1 to 3 p.m.

Dec. 11: First Christian Church Women's Christmas Party, 5:30 p.m.

Dec. 13: Chamber-Main Street "Making Holidays Happen" lighted Christmas parade.

Dec. 15: Chamber-Main Street "Making Holidays Happen" Christmas movie at the library, 1 to 3 p.m.

Dec. 16: Chautauqua Singers "Hope of Christmas" at United Methodist Church, 2:30 to 7 p.m.

Dec. 24: United Methodist Church Candlelight Christmas Eve services are 5:30 p.m. and 9 p.m.

Dec. 24: First Presbyterian Church Christmas Eve service, 7 p.m.


Holiday Open House at the Somers Library, 5 to 7 p.m.


Dec 9: Thor Boosters Annual Soup Supper, 5 to 7 p.m., Thor Hall; Santa, door prizes, chili and chicken noodle soup.


Dec. 1: "Christmas in Titonka" at the school gymnasium; 11 a.m. until gone, cookie pail sale; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at-home vendors and crafts; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., bake sale; 1 to 3 p.m., Boy Scouts table of fun; 1 to 3 p.m., bingo; 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Santa Shop is open; 1 to 3 p.m., Santa; 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Soup lunch includes chili and chicken noodle (proceeds to community club); 11:45 a.m. to 2 p.m. entertainment and drawings. Snow date is Dec 2.


Dec. 1: Webster City Community Chorus Annual Holiday Concert 7 p.m., Asbury Methodist Church.

Dec. 1: Breakfast with Santa, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., Riverview Early Childhood Center.

Dec. 2: Webster City Community Chorus Annual Holiday Concert, 2 p.m., Asbury Methodist Church.

Dec 10: Seventh- and Eighth-Grade Chorus Holiday Concert at 6 p.m., Webster City Middle School.

Dec. 10: High School Band and Chorus Winter Music Concert, 7:15 p.m., Prem Sahai Auditorium, Webster City High School.

Dec. 15: "Christmas at the Bridge" 9 a.m. to noon, The Bridge, 905 Des Moines St.

Dec. 17: Middle School Holiday Band Concert, 7 p.m., Webster City Middle School.

Dec. 18: Movie "Miracle on 34th Street," 6 p.m., Kendall Young Library.