It’s Christmastime in the Northern Neck
December 10, 2020
Historically, the small towns and villages throughout the Northern Neck embrace the holidays on a lavish scale. An abundance of twinkling lights, wreaths, and oversize ornaments are displayed on storefronts and on the lampposts that frame each town’s “Main Street.” Teams from local businesses and nonprofits start early in the fall designing their themed float for the Kilmarnock Lighted Parade that draws excited onlookers of all ages from across the region to see the 100-plus floats and, of course, Santa Claus.
This year required a different tack.
Instead of the traditional parade, the community is invited to drive the Reverse Parade route and feast their eyes on 53 gaily decorated businesses safely from their cars. Each participating business will have a numbered sign. The route starts at the Lancaster By the Bay Chamber of Commerce office, 16-A Town Centre Drive, Kilmarnock.
According to a December 4 article in the Rappahannock Record, LBTB Executive Director Anne Paparella encourages everyone to participate and vote for their selections by December 25. “The community is invited to look at the entries and then head over to our Facebook social media page and vote for their favorite Viewer’s Choice Award entry. The most social media ‘likes’ will win.”
The Reverse Parade also will include a scavenger hunt! Participants can win gift certificates to some local retailers and more. Contact the Chamber for additional information.
Still searching for that just-right gift for someone special? The RAL Art Center Holiday Shop is one of the recommended go-to destinations for local artisan fine art and crafts holiday giving. RAL is located at 19 N. Main Street, Kilmarnock, and the Holiday Shop is opened Thursday-Saturday, 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, and until 1:00 PM on Christmas Eve. Find a diverse assortment of ornaments, cards, jewelry, hanging art, creative glass designs, basketry, and knitwear.
Grab the kids, bundle up, and head outside. The Walk in the Park at the Kilmarnock Town Centre Park is a free self-guided event for the community from 5:00 to 8:00 PM nightly through December 27. Stroll through the park and enjoy the sights and sounds of the season.
Welcome Santa Claus to Lancaster County Friday, December 11, at 7:00 PM. Wave to Santa as he drives through Kilmarnock, Irvington, and White Stone with local firemen, police, and EMS with lights a-blazing. See Santa’s travel routes.
The Lancaster Virginia Historical Society (LVHS) offers a unique opportunity to learn how locals celebrated Christmas during the Great Depression through its “1930’s Christmas in Lancaster: Holiday Cheer in Spite of Hard Times” Zoom webinar presentation on Thursday, December 17, at 3:00 PM. The online event is part of the ongoing “Zooming in on Lancaster County History: Virtual Speaker Series,” a bi-weekly virtual speaker series that runs 30-45 minutes and features local authors, historians, and researchers. On December 17, presenter Shaune Lee will share research from a past LVHS museum exhibit, including numerous ads and stories gleaned from Northern Neck newspapers in the 1930s. The webinar is free to LVHS members and $5 for the general public. Advanced registration is required. Go to the LVHS Facebook page for additional information.
It’s customary, particularly during the holiday season, to consider those less fortunate and give what we can to help organizations across the Northern Neck provide essential services. Local churches, nonprofits such as the Healthy Harvest Food Bank, River Counties Community Foundation, Northern Neck Family YMCA, Bay Aging, Boys & Girls Club of the Northern Neck, and the Northern Neck & Middlesex Free Health Clinic are just several of the hard-working agencies that do so much for so many.
Lastly, don’t forget to shop locally this year. Now more than ever, our locally owned small businesses need our business. Go to TheBuckStaysHere.com for a directory of more than 400 local businesses and nonprofits.
All event information is accurate at the time of publication. But please call ahead to confirm. Schedules continue to be fluid during the health crisis.
THE BUCK STAYS HERE
TheBuckStaysHere.com, powered by Chesapeake Bank, is a local online resource of more than 400 small businesses and nonprofit organizations. Membership is FREE, so register your business or nonprofit today. Now, more than ever, it’s essential to support local small businesses. They are the backbone of our economy. You can help them survive and thrive by buying gifts, dining, and using local establishments’ services. So, please, put “helping our local economy” on your Christmas list.