By Sally Voth
Caroling, carriage rides, holiday goodies, dancing and more will be on tap Saturday during the Holly Jolly Old Town Celebration in Winchester.
The city, the Old Town Winchester Business Association and Full Circle Marketing have taken a new tradition started last year and expanded it into an all-day and all-evening affair, Full Circle owner and Old Town Development Board member Dario Savarese said.
Centered on and around the Loudoun Street Mall, the Holly Jolly Old Town Celebration will include holiday specials and treats at shops and restaurants, caroling between noon and 7 p.m., free horse-drawn carriage ridges 6-8 p.m., a model train exhibit, a candlelight ball and a "Holly Jolly March & Santa Stomp," according to a news release.
"Last year was the first year that they hosted the Victorian Candlelight Ball," Savarese said. "This is the first year of the enhanced Holly Jolly Old Town Celebration."
There will be dance instruction starting at 6 p.m. before the ball begins at 7 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 116 S. Loudoun St. There will be music by the Susquehanna Travelers, additional dance instruction and refreshments, and people may come in casual, formal or period clothing.
Those interested in taking part in the march and Santa stomp, are asked to wear anything from tacky ties and sweaters, to Elf, Santa, Mrs. Clause, snowman and reindeer costumes as they hit the bars and restaurants seeking donations for the Evans Home for Children.
Participants can meet at Sweet Caroline's "where we're going to rally the Santas between 5:30 and 6 o'clock," Savarese said. For more information, call Savarese at 722-8700.
Also getting into the spirit is the Winchester Model Railroad Club, which will open its doors at 430 N. Cameron St., between 1:30 and 4 p.m. to let everyone enjoy their train exhibit.
"It's a layout of about 40 by 60 feet -- actually probably bigger than that -- of model trains," Savarese said. "There's probably over a mile of train track laid out in there."
Also on Saturday, the Old Court House Civil War Museum will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and there will be an Old Town Civil War Walking Tour at 11 a.m. The $5 tour will meet at the Kurtz Building, 2 N. Cameron St. For more information, call the Winchester-Frederick County Visitors Center at 542-1326.
Aside from the walking tour, all of the events are free. Savarese pointed out the abundance of parking near the pedestrian mall.
"You can get anywhere in old town Winchester with just a short walk," he said. "Come on down and have just a great time. It's a perfect time to celebrate the Christmas holiday season."
Contact staff writer Sally Voth at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or firstname.lastname@example.org