I’m Dreaming of an Athens Christmas

The holidays are a great time for getting out into the community and spending time as a family. The city of Athens, Alabama offers many family-friendly events that will get you into the holiday spirit! Not only are they celebrating Christmas in Athens, it’s also their Bicentennial. Take a look at these great opportunities for holiday cheer, and be sure to get them on your family’s calendar!

Christmas Open House: A Bicentennial Christmas

November 16 – 18
Cost: Free
Downtown Athens, AL | View Website
Come visit Historic Downtown Athens for this wonderful annual open house! Events include Ice Skating on the Square, Blizzard Bash on the Square, visiting with Santa and Mrs. Clause, a Christmas Train Ride, Christmas Lights show, and more! Visit the link for times for all these and other events taking place at the Christmas Open House.

Christmas Ornament Decorating (TEARS Foundation)

Sunday, November 18, 2-4 PM
Cost: Free
Location: TBD | More Info
Christmas Ornament Decorating with the Alabama Chapter of the TEARS Foundation for families to come together and create butterfly ornaments to honor their babies’ memories.

Big Thanksgiving Celebration with Josh and Ashley Franks

Sunday, November 25, 6-9 PM
Cost: Free
Midway Baptist Church (map) | More Info
This is the Big Thanksgiving Celebration with Josh and Ashley Franks. The nationally known couple are singers/songwriters who host a weekly program from Atlanta. Josh is the Senior Pastor of Peoples Tabernacle in Savannah, Tennessee. He is well known in Southern Gospel Music as a promoter and emcee with big events such as the National Quartet Convention. There is never an admission charge at Midway Baptist Church. A love offering will be received.

Breakfast with Santa Fundraiser

Saturday, December 1, 9 AM – Noon
Cost: $25/person
Revival (map) | More Info
Enjoy Sweet Thymes breakfast, crafting with Santa’s elves, a gift for your child, and a photo with Santa from Carla Lawrence Photography. This event is a charity fundraiser. All proceeds benefit Athens City Schools Foundation. Children must be accompanied by an adult.


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Winter Craft Fair

Saturday, December 1, 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Cost: Free
Athens-Limestone Public Library | View Website
Find the perfect gift for the holidays or something special just for you at the library’s craft fair. Free admission, raffle prizes.

Athens North Pole Stroll

December 1-28th, anytime
Cost: Free
Big Spring Memorial Park, Athens (map) | More Info
The Athens North Pole Stroll is an annual Christmas tradition held in Big Spring Memorial Park in the Historic Beaty District of Athens, Alabama by the Athens-Limestone County Tourism Association. The City of Athens Park and Recreation Department, Lowe’s of Athens and Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful assist in the activities and set up – creating the backdrop for an absolutely amazing backdrop for this family-friendly event.

Occurring in the month of December, a collection of Evergreen Trees appears along the walkways and the placid waters of the “Duck Pond” of the historic park sponsored and decorated by local churches, groups, organizations, families, and individuals. The “Tired Family” appears amid the trees gathered around a whimsical scene designed by Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful. The Athens North Pole Stroll comes to life after dark when the solar-powered lights on the trees begin to shine and twinkle. Santa will visit the evening of Dec. 15th!

11th Hour Christmas Tour

Sunday, December 2, 6-9 PM
Cost: Free
Midway Baptist Church (map) | More Info


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They are fun. They are energetic. They are serious business. They are one the busiest and highest in demand Gospel Trios in America. 11th Hour has stayed fresh and relevant while maintaining a versatile sound, able to lead congregations in moving times of worship. Come join them for a night Christmas music celebrating the birth of Christ.

Dinner with Santa

Tuesday, December 4, 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM
Cost: Free with dinner purchase
Zaxby’s, Athens (map) | More Info
Get your picture taken with Santa, decorate your own Christmas stocking and more! Available while supplies last.

Athens’ Annual Christmas Parade

Thursday, December 6, 6:00 PM
Cost: Free
Downtown Athens | More Info
The annual Trustmark Bank Christmas Parade heralds the arrival of Christmas with marching bands, floats and Santa! Bundle up and bring the whole family. The parade begins at Athens Middle School on Highway 31 and proceeds downtown via Hobbs St. Ends at Hometown Grocery on Jefferson Street.


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Committed Holiday Concert

Friday, December 7, 7:00 PM
Cost: $15, purchase online by Dec. 5th
McCandless Hall, Athens State University (map) | More Info
Committed is an a cappella singing group comprised of five educated, young men who love creativity, music, and God. The group began in 2003 at Forest Lake Academy and solidified their sound while in school at Oakwood University in Huntsville, AL. Committed has grown to be a very sought-after a cappella group for many events around the United States and also overseas.
The group had the amazing opportunity to be featured on the second season of NBC’s hit singing competition, “The Sing Off,” and emerged as the season two champions. It has been their strong faith, hard work, and creativity that has earned them the recognition as one of the nation’s top ten a cappella groups. Committed truly believes that “with God all things are possible,” and they will continue to work toward inspiring people through music.

Sippin’ Cider Festival

Saturday, December 8, 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Cost: Free
Downtown Athens | View Website
The Sippin’ Cider Festival was voted a Top 20 event in the Southeast in 2014. At this event, you will get to visit our merchants and sample cider. You get to vote for your favorite cider while shopping and enjoying store specials. The merchant with the most votes wins the Cider Cup and bragging rights for the year. Other activities include in-store children’s activities, train rides by the Athens Lions Club, live music, roasting marshmallows, and a visit from Santa!

Home for Christmas Concert

Saturday, December 8, 6:00-9:00 PM
Cost: Free
Midway Baptist Church (map) | More Info
Bradley Walker brings four of his closest friends to his home church for Christmas. Bradley, Carl Jackson, Larry Cordle, Val Storey and Jerry Salley represent the single biggest package of Dove and Grammy winners to ever assemble in one setting at Midway Baptist Church. It is almost impossible to listen to a radio station that plays gospel or country music and not hear either a voice, an instrument played, a song written or a project produced by at least one of them.

The Christmas Story Drive-Thru Nativity

December 14 – December 16, 5:30 – 8:30 PM
Cost: Free
Emmanuel Baptist Church (map) | More Info
Come experience this unique way of viewing the story of Jesus’ birth. This is a great way to see the nativity without having to leave your car!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Rachel Bloemer is a stay-at-home mom of two kids from Athens, Alabama. She enjoys singing, reading, and spending time with her family.

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