Holiday traditions return to Dickens in Dundee
Tree lightings, Santa visits, living windows and more will bring holiday cheer to this year's Dickens in Dundee festival, which takes place in both East and West Dundee.
This year's annual community holiday season kickoff event will take place on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 3-4.
The festival will start off Friday evening with tree lighting ceremonies at 5:45 p.m. at the Depot, 319 N. River St. in East Dundee, and 6 p.m. on the south lawn of the West Dundee village hall, 102 S. Second St.
From 6-8 p.m., warm up at the village hall with a cup of hot chocolate and some yummy Christmas cookies, while you visit with West Dundee officials and the kids discuss their Christmas wish list with the man in red. Then take a stroll through downtown West Dundee to enjoy the decorated storefront windows. Numerous themed windows will be on display between First and Second streets and along Main Street. Some will feature living windows, some traditional holiday decor, and some will be adorned with hand-painted designs.
A drawing for the Shop With A Cop of Dundee Township also will be held on Friday at the village hall. For details, visit www.facebook.com/ShopWithACopDundeeTownship.
Across the river in East Dundee after the tree lighting, check out the Living Windows or stop by for a "Visit With Santa" from 6 to 9 p.m. There also will be entertainment with The Frozen Robins caroling quartet from 6 to 8 p.m., and Those Funny Little People Christmas Elves and the "Frozen Fab Four" (Snow Queen, Anna, Kristoff and Olaf) from 6 to 9 p.m. Take a free horse-drawn carriage ride from 6 to 9 p.m.
The Spirit of Christmas Parade will return this year, stepping off at 10 a.m. Saturday at Second and Main streets and heading east to River Street. Gather with friends and neighbors along Main Street in anticipation of Santa's appearance during this classic Christmas parade.
Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 401 W. Main St., is the place for one-stop shopping this holiday season. The church will host a Craft Boutique from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday with local, handmade items, as well as a bake sale to satisfy your sweet tooth or load you up with tasty treats to bring along to your next holiday party. Stop in for nourishment at the Soup & Sandwich Lunch from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. All proceeds from the luncheon will be donated to the FISH Food Pantry to assist local families in need this holiday season.
The West Dundee church is also hosting Dundee Township Historical Society's "Dickens of a Sale," featuring new and gently used Christmas items sold at reasonable prices, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Make some fun holiday crafts and enjoy complimentary popcorn, coffee and hot cocoa during Santa's Workshop Kids Craft from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday in Grafelman Park, Fourth and Main streets.
Visit Santa's animal friends, including goats, sheep, donkeys, ponies and more, in the petting zoo from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday in Grafelman Park.
Over the weekend, walk the gallery of Christmas trees decorated by local school groups and clubs in the Ron Rhoades Festival of Trees Display in Grafelman Park.
Trees are decorated on Friday between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. The community is welcome to observe the decorating, have a cup of hot chocolate, and drop off a donation for the FISH Food Pantry. Viewing is on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Trees are judged for "Creativity," "Beauty," and "Holiday Spirit," with three Gold Awards and three Silver Awards given in each category. A People's Choice Award will be determined via Facebook. Vote by "liking" the photo of your favorite tree on the Dundee Lions Facebook page.
The West Dundee Police Department is collecting new, unwrapped toy donations for Toys For Tots through Wednesday, Dec. 8. Consider a donation to help bring smiles to the faces of underprivileged children throughout Kane County this holiday season.
The Toys for Tots donation drop box in the police station lobby is accessible 24/7 and monitored by video. If you have a large number of donations, call (847) 551-3810 in advance.
The Dundee Lions Club also is hosting its annual Christmas Tree Sale in the tennis court at Grafelman Park. Sales started Nov. 21 and continue from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesdays to Fridays and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, while supplies last.