Geneva Christmas Walk Weekends keep spirits merry through Dec. 20

  • Courtesy of Gerald Auto GroupGerald Auto Group has partnered with Geneva on many community events and is a presenting sponsor of this year's Christmas activities, which wrap up Dec. 19-20.

    Courtesy of Gerald Auto GroupGerald Auto Group has partnered with Geneva on many community events and is a presenting sponsor of this year's Christmas activities, which wrap up Dec. 19-20.

  • Courtesy of Geneva Chamber of CommerceFamilies looking to simply catch a glimpse of Santa can see him riding through the city streets in a horse-drawn carriage from 10 to 10:30 a.m. every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 20.

    Courtesy of Geneva Chamber of CommerceFamilies looking to simply catch a glimpse of Santa can see him riding through the city streets in a horse-drawn carriage from 10 to 10:30 a.m. every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 20.

 
Posted12/17/2020 1:00 AM

For years, tens of thousands of people have flocked to downtown Geneva on the first Friday in December for the community's annual Christmas Walk.

It's a holiday tradition families never miss, but with pandemic regulations in place in 2020, the annual Christmas Walk of years' past wasn't possible. With a little ingenuity and creative thinking, Geneva changed the event to be not just one day in December, but spread out over several weekends to still bring cheer to the community in a safe and socially distanced way.

 

Christmas Walk Weekends debuted Dec. 4 and are keeping spirits bright in Geneva all month long.

"Everyone, especially children, has had so much taken from them this year. We just knew we had to keep Christmas alive in Geneva," said Laura Rush, communications manager for the Geneva Chamber of Commerce.

Each weekend features different activities the whole family can enjoy. The weekend of Dec. 4, visitors enjoyed activities centered around the theme, "Traditions Old & New." The tree and courthouse lawn were aglow to kick off the weekslong festivities, shops were open late and shoppers could dine outside or carry out from Geneva's award-winning restaurants.

The following weekend, Dec 12-13, visitors enjoyed "Caroling & Music." Families enjoyed listening to carolers as they strolled through the streets of downtown Geneva throughout the weekend.

Christmas Walk Weekends wrap up with a Cocoa Crawl the weekend of Dec. 19-20. The event is already sold out and visitors are eagerly anticipating a weekend of last-minute Christmas shopping and exploring a downtown Geneva lit up and brightly decorated for the holidays.

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Santa visits

Of course, Christmas Walk Weekends would not be complete without a visit from Santa Claus. This year, Santa has been moved to a temporary location at the Geneva Visitors Bureau in downtown Geneva that allows kids to speak to him safely from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Reservations are required to visit Santa this year. Families looking to simply catch a glimpse of Santa can see him riding through the city streets in a horse-drawn carriage from 10 to 10:30 a.m. every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 20.

"Having Santa arrive this year was very important, so we worked on many angles to make that possible. We hope visiting Santa and these weekends bring a little cheer to everyone," Rush said.

Events like the Christmas Walk Weekends aren't possible without generous sponsors like Gerald Subaru of North Aurora, which is this year's presenting sponsor. Rush said the dealership not only gave monetarily, but donated gaiter masks to those who attended the event to help keep everyone safe. Gerald also had several vehicles on display near the courthouse during the weekend festivities. Geneva has partnered with Gerald for many community events and Rush said their contributions are always greatly appreciated.

For Gerald, supporting the local communities that have helped them over the years is part of their core values. Gerald Auto Group started with one dealership and the organization has never forgotten the importance of supporting small, independent and local establishments, whether they're new to the area, long-established or growing into large businesses as Gerald Auto Group has done.

"We started small and we believe it's important to give back to small businesses, which are the backbone of any community. We want our customers to know that we're not only looking out for their vehicle needs, but also for ways we can help our communities thrive," said Donna Lawler, General Manager of Gerald Subaru of North Aurora.

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