FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nov. 7, 2019
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ABILENE, Texas - Crews already are hard at work decorating downtown Abilene in holiday finery for this year’s City Sidewalks & Downtown Days, Dec. 2-7. It’s will be the 31st year for the holiday tradition, and the Abilene Downtown Association today released a sparkling lineup for a full week of revelry.
Last year the event grew from one day to a full week, and the events gleaned such an overwhelming response from the community that the group was inspired to do it again. Shopping and dining and a stroll through the lights and decorations downtown was a favorite evening activity for both locals and visitors, with families and guests filling Abilene streets throughout evenings in December. This year, the committee promises to bring back favorites plus a few surprises.
“Back by popular demand in Everman Park will be the Christmas tree with lights that dance to holiday music, but we’re also adding a giant 16-foot light up snowman,” said City Sidewalks Committee Chairman Mary Cooksey. “The wall of lights and other fun décor will grace Minter Park, and the impressive Christmas tree at the south entrance of the Convention Center is growing to a whopping 62 feet tall, and we’re working on a few other ideas.” During City Sidewalks week, each venue goes all out. Merchants, museums, galleries, restaurants, and watering holes make special plans and keep special hours for a smorgasbord of holiday fun.
Monday, Dec. 2, everyone is invited to the south side of the Convention Center for the official lighting of the downtown decorations. Live music and line dancing with the Texas Tornados will mark the occasion.
Following nights offer themed fun, with a festive Christmas Lights Parade Tuesday, a Pet Pawlooza Wednesday, caroling and La Posadas procession Thursday, and shopping specials on Friday and Saturday. Find a full schedule here.
Fans also can vote for the best decorated downtown shop window in three categories: Downtown Holiday Windows, Displays, and Lighting. Vote on the Abilene Downtown Facebook page; voting will begin Nov. 27 and close Dec. 7.
The weeklong City Sidewalks & Downtown Days celebration is the result of collaboration of dozens of businesses, support from all affiliates of the Abilene Chamber of Commerce and the City of Abilene.
The Abilene Downtown Association is grateful to the support of Christmas Décor by Lone Star Electric, Dian Graves Owen Foundation, H-E-B, JAR Land & Investments, First Baptist Church Abilene, and two anonymous Christmas angels for underwriting the Christmas decorations in Everman Park, Minter Park, and the Christmas tree on the south entrance of the Abilene Convention Center.
For maps and details of all the activities and events please visit: https://www.abilenedowntown.com/city-sidewalks.
The Abilene Downtown Association is a non-profit group that brings together merchants, venues and developers who work to promote the downtown area through collaboration, events, and marketing.
City Sidewalks & Downtown Days, Dec. 2-7, 2019
Discover the charm of Christmas in downtown Abilene at the 31st Annual City Sidewalks celebration. Merchants, museums and galleries will open their decorated doors for a full week of holiday cheer, fun activities and shopping. Highlights include a parade of lights, lighting of a 62-foot Christmas tree, musical performances and free goodies.
Monday, Dec. 2
Opening Festivities: Abilene Downtown Association kicks off the 31st annual celebration of City Sidewalks week with the lighting of downtown Abilene! Generously underwritten by the Dian Graves Owen Foundation, JAR Land & Investments, Lone Star Electric, H-E-B, First Baptist Church and two anonymous angels.
- Create Rudolph ornaments at the Abilene Public Library, 202 Cedar St. 4:30-5:30 p.m.
- Music from Abilene Star Chorus (Sweet Adelines), Tony Barker. 5:30 p.m.
- Holiday line dancing with the Texas Tornadoes. 6:15 p.m.
- Lighting of a 62-foot-tall Christmas tree on the south steps of Abilene Convention Center at 6 p.m.
- Minter Park and Everman Park will light up with holiday lights and decorations.
- Showing of the1948 classic “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” at 6:15 p.m. on the lawn of the Convention Center.
Media Sponsor: KTAB/KRBC/Telemundo/Big Country Home Page
Chair: Mari Cockerell
Tuesday, Dec. 3
Catch the holiday spirit at the 31st Annual FOX West Texas Christmas Lights Parade sponsored by Coca-Cola. More than 100 festive floats travel through Downtown Abilene starting at 6:30 p.m.
Route: North on Pine Street, left on N. 6th and south on Cypress Street.
- Downtown Fun: Restaurants, cultural venues and stores are open late.
- Food trucks on N. 2nd between Pine & Cypress and N. 6th between Cypress and Cedar streets.
- Abilene ISD Entertainment: More than 20 music groups in 20 locations downtown will perform.
- Music of the season from these performers:
- LUNDI at Monks, 233 Cypress St., 5-7:30 p.m.
- The Memory Men at Texas Star Trading Co., 174 Cypress St., 5:30-6 p.m.
- Abilene Community Band at Paramount Theatre, 352 Cypress St., 5:30-6 p.m.
- Celebration Singers at First Financial Bank, 400 Pine St., 6:30-7 p.m.
- Festive Face Painting: 5-7 p.m. at the Abilene Public Library. Free.
- Free Treats: The Hotel Wooten lobby
- Community Tree Lighting: At 7:30 p.m., the Abilene mayor will perform the official duty of lighting the Christmas tree inside the Abilene Convention Center foyer. Abilene ISD students will perform and refreshments will be served.
Media Sponsor: Fox West Texas
Christmas Lights Parade Chair: Susan Acuna
Please visit here for Fox West Texas Parade Information and Forms
Parade Street Volunteers are needed, sponsored by D.R.I.V.E. Safe Coalition
Wednesday, Dec. 4
Holiday PetPawlooza: Bring your well-behaved dog or cat downtown to enjoy holiday-themed entertainment and snap a photo with Santa Claws.
- Pet Pop-Up Christmas Market, contests and pet specialty items.
- Make a Dog Toy: The downtown Abilene Public Library will offer a do-it-yourself dog tug toy craft activity from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.
- "It’s a Wonderful Life" At 7 p.m., KACU 89.5 Abilene Public Radio presents “It’s a Wonderful Life” live radio play at the Paramount Theatre. Fun for the whole family. Tickets: $15; children 12 and younger are free. KACU.org.
Media Sponsor: KTXS-TV
Chair: Molly Moser
Thursday, Dec. 5
- Caroling All the Way: Fill the downtown sidewalks with the music of the season at 6 p.m.
- Vocal groups, musicians and handbell choirs are invited. At 6:30 p.m., sing “Joy to the World” in Minter Park followed by a Las Posadas procession.
- Carols & Ales: Get into the spirit(s) at Cypress Street Station,158 Cypress St., with draft beer and Christmas carols from 6-8 p.m. Red Gap Brewing Co. at $3 each; Abilene Bible and Brew. Come festively dressed! Prize for winner.
- Design a new sleigh for Santa with the LEGO Club at the library from 4-6 p.m.
- Ornament Workshop: 6-7 p.m., The Grace Museum
Media Sponsor: LaVoz 93.3FM
Chair: Abbie Randolph
Friday, Dec. 6
Shop downtown’s sparkly sidewalks: Retailers and businesses will make you merry with special festivities and extended hours Friday and Saturday. See social media for daily shopping and dining updates!
- The Antique Station, 703 N. 3rd St. Collectibles.
- The Arrangement & The Warehouse, 357 Walnut St. Boutique, floral and events.
- Betty & June, 189 Pine St. Boutique.
- Bible Hardware, 333 Walnut St. Hardware, gifts and knives.
- Cypress Street Station, 158 Cypress St. Dining.
- The Grace Museum, 102 Cypress St.
- The King’s Barber, 173 Walnut St. Gift cards and men’s grooming.
- The Local, 250 Cypress St. Dining
- Loft on 6th, 1031 N. 6th St. Boutique.
- Lone Star Dry Goods, 173 Walnut St. Classic American clothing/gifts.
- McKay’s Bakery, 266 Cypress St. Dining & treats.
- Monks Coffee Shop, 233 Cypress St.
- Texas Star Trading Co., 174 Cypress St. Texas books, gifts, edibles and souvenirs.
- Under One Roof, 244 Pine St. Unique clothing, gifts and accessories.
- Walking Tour: Take a SoDA District Progress Walking Tour beginning at 5:30 p.m. at 833 S. 1st. Ends at 6:30 p.m. at Amendment 21. See the future home of Sockdolager Brewing and more!
- Christmas in the Garden: How Do Dinosaurs Say Merry Christmas? Find out at this special Storybook Capital family event in the Adamson-Spalding Storybook Garden. Be the first to experience magical new lighting. Hop aboard the train. Play in real snow. Make holiday crafts. Meet Santa. Have your picture taken in our dinosaur-themed photo area. $10/family. Train rides are $1. By the Abilene Cultural Affairs Council. Register at www.abilenecac.org.
- Ch... in America: At 7 p.m., enjoy a free concert by Celebration Singers at Paramount.
- Belsnickel Beer Stroll – Are you impish or admirable? You’ll find out when you meet your guide Belsnickel at the Center for Contemporary Arts, and he takes you to find tasty treasures at venues throughout the Cultural District. 8 p.m. check-In and tour ends at 10 p.m. at the Center with an after-party. Limited tickets. $45. Includes shirt. Call (325) 677-8389.
Chairs: Allison Carroll and Tom Craig
Saturday, Dec. 7
- Junior League of Abilene Reindeer Run 5K 9 a.m. at the Abilene Convention Center. jrleagueabilene.com.
- Family Fun Day: Bring the kids to the National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature, 102 Cedar St., to meet Santa Claus! There will be an art activity, “Santa Calls” book reading and more!
- Christmas Concert: Abilene Philharmonic, A Hometown Christmas, featuring Bruce Ewing, vocalist, Abilene High School Drum Line, Abilene Christian School Children’s Choir, and a seven-congregation choir. Family Friendly Matinee at 3 pm; full concert at 7:30 pm. Abilene Convention Center. www.abilenephilharmonic.org
- Action Christmas Movie: Paramount Film Series presents “Die Hard” starring Bruce Willis. Terrorists take hostages at a Christmas Eve party. 7:30 p.m.