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St. Charles Christmas Traditions: Forty-five seasons and going strong

[St. Charles Christmas Traditions photo]

For the past 45 years, the streets of Historic Saint Charles have come alive with the sights and sounds of the holidays for the annual St. Charles Christmas Traditions festival. The 2019 event has been updated with new festive characters, entertainment and music that will make visions of Christmas past roar to life in the present.  

Festival hours are: Opening Day [Nov. 29]: 11 a.m.-9 p.m.; Wednesdays: 6-9 p.m.; Fridays: 6-9 p.m.; Saturdays: 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Sundays: Noon-5 p.m.; and Christmas Eve 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

Opening Day: The festival kicks off with the arrival of Santa, Mrs. Claus and all of the Legends of Christmas at 11 a.m.  Friday, Nov. 29 at the Kister Park Gazebo, 400 block of South Main. 

Tree Lighting Ceremony: Friday, Nov. 29 at 5 p.m. in Berthold Square. 

Santa Parade: Opening Day, Saturdays and Sundays at 1:30 p.m., South Main Street to the Tourism Center [corner of First Capitol and Riverside].

[St. Charles Christmas Traditions photo]

Santa’s Cottage: Gather in Santa’s parlor at the Katy Depot in Frontier Park to share Christmas wish lists and take photos. Visiting hours are Friday, Nov. 29 from noon-5 p.m.; Saturdays from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sundays from noon- 5 p.m. and Christmas Eve from 11 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.

“Oh Christmas Tree: The Evolution of an Icon”: This free exhibit shows how Christmas trees have changed through the ages. Hours are Friday, Nov. 29 from noon-5 p.m.; Saturdays from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sundays from noon- 5 p.m. and Christmas Eve from 11 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. at the Katy Depot in Frontier Park.

“Twas the Night Before Christmas”: Wednesdays from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the First Missouri State Capitol State Historic Site, 200 South Main Street. 

Storytime With Mrs. Claus & Mother Goose: Join Mrs. Claus and Mother Goose  for holiday tales on Saturdays and Sundays at 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. at the First Missouri State Capitol State Historic Site. 

Cobblestone Wassailiers in Concert: Features carols and music for all ages. Saturdays and Sundays at 4 p.m. in the Kister Park Gazebo.

Land of Sweets GumBALL: Dance along with Clara, the Nutcracker Prince and the Sugar Plum Fairy on Saturdays and Sundays at 12:30 p.m. in the Kister Park Gazebo.

Krampus Karnival: Experience holiday customs from around the globe as Krampus and friends turn the depot into a carnival mid-way. Wednesday and Friday nights from 6-9 p.m. at Katy Depot in Frontier Park. 

Voices of Christmas: Enjoy the sounds of choirs from across the region. Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30 p.m. in the OPO Plaza, 119 South Main Street.

Meet Santa’s Reindeer: Visit and take photos with some of Santa’s steeds on Dec. 21-22 from 3-5 p.m. at the First State Capitol State Historic Site.

Chanukah On Main Street – Celebrating The Festival Of Lights: Join in the kindling of a Chanukah menorah, dancing and a gelt drop Sunday, Dec. 22 at 5 p.m. in Berthold Square.

Candlelight Processionals: The day comes to a close every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at 8:30 p.m. and Sundays at 4:30 p.m. from the 900 block of South Main St. to Kister Park.

Closing Ceremony and Santa Send-Off: Bid farewell to Santa and Mrs. Claus at 1:30 p.m. on Dec. 24 at the Parade Stage, 1000 South Main Street. 

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