Special to Iredell Free News

The holiday season will officially kick off in Downtown Statesville with Black Friday and Small Business Saturday followed by the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony on December 1.

Here’s a list of upcoming holiday events in Downtown Statesville:

Black Friday (November 25) & Small Business Saturday (November 26)

Take part in Black Friday and Small Business Saturday by shopping in Downtown Statesville. With more than 55 unique shops, boutiques and restaurants throughout the downtown district, you are sure to find something for everyone on your list.

Make a purchase at any of the participating businesses on Black Friday and/or Small Business Saturday and you can enter a drawing to win $100 in Downtown Statesville Dollars. The drawing will be held on Monday, December 5.

Visit www.downtownstatesville.com/small-business-saturday for a list of participating businesses and the promotions.

Downtown Christmas Tree Lighting – Thursday, December 1

The official Downtown Christmas Tree Lighting is set for Thursday, December 1, in front of the Iredell County Government Building located at 200 S. Center Street. Enjoy classic holiday songs performed by the American Renaissance School Chorus from 6 to 7 p.m. and watch in delight as Santa arrives in style, thanks to AP Vintage Motors. Santa and Mayor Kutteh will begin the countdown to light the tree at 6:45 p.m.

• Train Rides at Griffin Insurance sponsored by the Statesville Civic Center: Train enthusiasts of all ages will love a ride on the Little Blue Choo, provided by the Statesville Civic Center. Adults and children alike are welcome to take a free ride in the Griffin Insurance parking lot located at 139 East Broad Street from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

• Horse Drawn Carriage Rides Sponsored by Griffin Insurance – The wonderful tradition of surrounding yourself with the sights and sounds of the holidays in a beautiful horse-drawn carriage ride through Downtown Statesville will continue this year. Carriage rides will be available for purchase beginning November 22 at www.downtownstatesville.com/horse-drawn-carriage-rides.

Holiday Shop & Stroll Spectacular – December 2, 9, and 16

On Friday, December 2, bring the whole family downtown for the Holiday Shop & Stroll Spectacular. The event brings the feeling of an old-fashioned, small town Christmas season to the streets of Downtown, while adding a dash of excitement and a sprinkle of magic!

Enjoy a fun evening of merchant open houses, with many businesses open until 8:30 p.m. Stroll the sidewalks, listen to carolers, and enjoy the sparkle of holiday lights. Enjoy a festive trolley ride, and experience a snowflake or two!

The following events will be on December 2 ONLY:
• Visit Santa Central at City Hall (December 2 ONLY): Santa Central will be filled with fun for the little ones. Visit with Santa Claus and his elves, write a letter and send it straight to the North Pole with the magic mailbox, and make a craft with Santa’s elves! There will even be popcorn and hot cocoa for warming up!

• Tours of City Hall Sponsored by The Sharpe House Historic Players (December 2 ONLY) from 6 to 8 p.m.: Take a tour of one of the architectural gems of Statesville decorated beautifully for the season! Learn about its history and reconstruction and enjoy visits from ghosts of its past. Tours presented by The Sharpe House Historic Players.

• Victorian Carolers and Music (December 2 ONLY) – There will be no shortage of holiday music during the Shop & Stroll! Victorian Carolers will be roaming the streets throughout the night to bring cheer to everyone around. There are also many other locations that will be hosting live music during the evening.

• Train Rides at Griffin Insurance sponsored by the Statesville Civic Center (December 2 ONLY): Train enthusiasts of all ages will love a ride on the Little Blue Choo, provided by the Statesville Civic Center. Adults and children alike are welcome to take a free ride in the Griffin Insurance parking lot located at 139 East Broad Street from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.

• Live Nativity at First ARP Church at 6 & 7 p.m. (December 2 ONLY): The Nativity Story will be presented live outside the front of First ARP Church, located at 123 East Broad Street, with presentations at 6 and 7 p.m. Special music will be provided prior to and between performances by the First ARP Choir and Organist. They will provide cookies and hot chocolate. In the event of bad weather, the presentations will take place in the sanctuary.

The following events will be on December 2, 9 & 16:
• Holiday Selfie Stations located throughout Downtown. Take a pic to post with your friends and family!
• Holly Jolly Trolley Rides Sponsored by Griffin Insurance from 6 to 8 p.m.: Surround yourself with the sights and sounds of the holidays on an old-fashioned festive trolley ride through Downtown Statesville. Be entertained with magical holiday fun provided by Center Stage Alliance as you and your family see the beautifully decorated streets of Downtown Statesville aboard the festive Holly Jolly Trolley! The Holly Jolly Depot will be located at the Downtown Christmas Tree located at the Iredell County Government Center at 200 S. Center Street with stops throughout Downtown.
• Horse-Drawn Carriage Rides, sponsored by R. Gregory Jewelers – R. Gregory Jewelers will be hosting carriage rides in front of their store each Friday in December until Christmas with donations accepted for Purple Heart Homes.
• S’mores Station from 6 to 8:30 p.m.: Warm up by the fire, roast a marshmallow, and enjoy a warm gooey S’more. Statesville Fire Department will be there to make sure everyone safely enjoys the evening! The S’mores Station will be located next to Sub Express from 6 to 8:30 pm. S’more kits will be sold for $1 each.
• Open House at the Historic Sharpe House from 6 to 8:30 p.m.: Visit the home of Statesville’s first mayor beautifully decorated for the Holidays. Take a stroll down to The Sharpe House Historic Players’ Pasture Stage and see the festive light display. Live music by the Kincaids from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on December 2. Santa will be there on December 9 & 16.
• Downtown Shopping & Dining Downtown:  Retailers are putting on their holiday best and opening their doors to shoppers. Stores will be decked out and stocked with this season’s best gifts for everyone on your list. Many of the shops will provide great deals and special in-store events. To go with the holiday shopping season, downtown restaurants are ready to treat you to the holiday feasting season. 

Additional December Events

Holiday Statesville Story Stroll (December 1-January 6): Run, run, as fast as you can to help us catch the Gingerbread Man. Can you help us catch him as your read your way through Downtown Statesville? Participating local businesses will have story panels in their windows for your family to enjoy. Follow along with the story, then head over to the Iredell County Partnership for Young Children to claim your prize.

Horse Drawn Carriage Rides (December 1, 8 & 15): Surround yourself with the sights and sounds of the holidays in a beautiful horse drawn carriage ride through Downtown Statesville. Carriage rides will be available for purchase beginning November 22, 29, & December 6, respectively, at https://www.downtownstatesville.com/horse-drawn-carriage-rides.

Holiday Pops with the Greensboro Symphony Orchestra (December 8 at 6:30 p.m.): Concert at the Statesville Civic Center.

Gingerbread Workshop for Kids (December 10 at 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.): Looking for a fun activity for the kids? Bring them to The Watering Hole located at 226 West Broad Street to make their very own Gingerbread House! Sponsored by City of Statesville, The Watering Hole and The Vanilla Bean Bakery & Coffee Shop. Seating is limited, so reserve your spot at www.downtownstatesville.com.

Statesville Christmas Parade (December 11 at 3 p.m.): The parade is sponsored by the 30th Masonic District of North Carolina.

Downtown Outdoor Movie Night (December 17 at 6 p.m.): Join us in the Broad Street United Methodist Church lawn located at 315 West Broad Street for a screening of the Holiday favorite, Elf! Hosted by Downtown Statesville Development Corporation and sponsored by Statesville Recreation and Parks. Bring a chair and blanket and enjoy this classic movie under the stars!

LEARN MORE

For a complete list of holiday events visit www.downtownstatesville.com/tis-the-season or call Downtown Statesville at 704-878-3436.

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