Beautiful lights and decorations, horse drawn carriage rides, hot chocolate, Christmas shopping, and friendly folks can only mean one thing:  It’s time for Christmas in Carterville. Friday, December 2, 2016, from 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm, downtown Carterville becomes a celebration that anyone familiar with “Gilmore Girls” would expect to find in Stars Hollow. 

     This year, the event has added a Christmas cookie contest. There are even more unique businesses to visit downtown. Botski’s, a cafĂ© and coffee shop, and Live Simple Shop are among the unique spots that have opened in newly renovated spaces on Division Street. If you are searching for hard to find Christmas gifts, you may find something in one of the antique stores or have something made at Live Simple Shop. 

     Besides the downtown businesses staying open late, many other vendors will be on site. Some of these are Ginger Snaps, kettlecorn, homemade salad dressing, Lipsense, Scentsy, Toy Copters, and more! 

     Some of the family-friendly activities include free hot dogs, carriage rides for a suggested donation of three dollars, and selfies with elves. The elves will also be around to assist folks in navigating the celebration. Free entertainment is set to include a performance by Arabesque Sugar Plum dancers as well as a group of line dancing ladies on the main stage. Kids will have an opportunity to write letters to Santa at Malone’s and also visit the Santa House. Local fireman will climb the truck ladder and conduct a “Snowball Drop” for the kids. 

     For more information, including a video Q&A session on the event, you may visit the Christmas in Carterville Facebook page. 

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