By Conrad Dudderar
Downtown Yukon will come alive in yuletide merriment next week with “Christmas Unwrapped,” a pre-Thanksgiving holiday retail spectacular.
The Yukon 66 Main Street Association and Yukon’s Best Main Street will present the first of two “Christmas On Main” open houses from 5-8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21 on Route 66 between 4th and 6th streets.
This first open house is the Thursday before Thanksgiving and the second promotion will be the Thursday after turkey day.
“In the past, we’ve had our holiday opens house after Thanksgiving but with Thanksgiving being so late in the month (Nov. 28), it was really important to us to provide our retailers with more of a shopping season,” Yukon Main Street Director Vicki Davis said.
Next Thursday’s “Christmas Unwrapped” will feature a showing of the movie “Elf” and follows an elf theme.
“We’re encouraging people to dress in Santa’s helper/elf costumes,” Davis said. “We want people to find their ‘inner elf’ – and bringing an unwrapped gift for Santa’s Toy Shoppe is one way.”
SANTA’S HELPER WISH LISTS
A second way is by entering the downtown stores open that night to fill out Santa’s helpers’ “wish lists”.
“People can shop the items and place them on that list,” Davis said. “They can address their envelopes so we can mail the list to whoever – a parent, spouse or someone else. Or we can leave it on registry at the store so when shopping for others, they can simply go into the shops and see what they have on their list.”
The slate of activities and attractions planned next Thursday is plentiful. There will be a living snow globe, horse-drawn carriage rides, make-and-take crafts, refreshments on the sidewalk, photos with Santa, and a can’t-miss marshmallow roasting station.
As if that’s not enough, the Nov. 21st Main Street holiday open house will feature strolling carolers and booths manned by business and volunteer groups – including Yukon’s veterans serving hot chocolate.
The annual lighting of the Christmas tree on the old flour mill is planned as well.
The second open house for Yukon Main Street merchants will be Dec. 5 when the theme will be “Classic Christmas”. The movie “Rudolph the Rednose Reindeer” will be shown and many of same family friendly activities will be provided.
Main Street merchants are being encouraged to decorate their stores for an annual holiday display contest with judging set Dec. 5.
AND THAT’S NOT ALL …
Yukon’s Main Street committee will present two other holiday activities:
– Small Business Saturday highlighted by a $500 shopping spree giveaway on Saturday, Nov. 30 at participating stores.
– An outdoor “old world” Czech Christmas Market to promote Yukon’s Czech heritage on Saturday, Dec. 14 in the parking lot at 10 W Main.
Main Street committee members plan to add more Christmas lights in the downtown business district to bring people to the area – much like the City of Yukon’s “Christmas In Park” extravaganza that attracts tens of thousands of tourists.
“We would like to be able to keep them in the community by drawing them down to the Main Street area to extend that culture and holiday fun they’re looking for,” Davis said.
“We’re hoping, over the next couple years, we’re able to build on the light display. A couple buildings downtown have embraced that already and hopefully we’ll keep adding to that in the next two years.”