Van Wert Christmas Garden, Van Wert, Ohio

The Van Wert County 4-H Exchange Club is hosting its tenth holiday spectacular for Van Wert County and the surrounding area. The “Holiday Light Show at the Fair” is a drive-through light show every weekend from Thanksgiving through Christmas. Exhibits are themed around the holidays and are supplied by local businesses, churches and organizations. Santa Claus will also make an appearance at the light show each Saturday night. Entertainment for the entire family.

Van Wert’s Children’s Garden will be transformed into the Christmas Garden. For the fifth consecutive year the Van Wert Parks Department, the Master Gardeners of Van Wert, and the Christmas Garden Decorating Committee have decorated the garden with thousands of lights and displays, creating a visually stunning exhibit. This stunning display draws thousands of visitors from around the area every year.

The display runs until Dec. 31st 5:30pm-11pm

Stan Hywet Hall “Deck the Halls” Akron, OH

Bring the whole family to enjoy one of Ohio’s largest and most spectacular holiday traditions, Deck the Hall. The estate is illuminated inside and out with over ONE MILLION lights and the historic Manor House is decorated and inspired by the theme of Postcards from the Past. DAZZLE is a fantastic outdoor light show choreographed to three new songs this year and Gingerbread Land, our popular Playgarden is “dressed up” for the holiday season.

Nightly tree lighting at 5:30pm. After Christmas, look for the Gingerbread Man. Live music in the Music Room, courtesy of area choirs and musicians. Self-guided tours of the Manor House included in ticket purchase. Freshly baked gingerbread cookies, savory warm pretzels, cocoa, and hot cider for purchase in the Courtyard. Enjoy all of the above treats at the cozy warming fire in the Courtyard. Visit with Santa and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer in the Corral in the Courtyard. Take a family photo at two featured photo spots — perfect for that family holiday picture. Marvel at our new animated Gingerbread Bakeshop Window in the Courtyard. The tropical Corbin Conservatory is beautifully decorated for Christmas with a 20ft poinsettia tree. Shop for unique holiday gifts in Molly’s Shop. Enjoy light fare or a sweet treat in Molly’s Café after your tour.

Bring the whole family to enjoy one of Ohio’s largest and most spectacular holiday traditions, Deck the Hall. The estate is illuminated inside and out with 800,000 lights and the historic Manor House is decorated in style for the Christmas season. DAZZLE is a fantastic outdoor light show animated to new music each year and Gingerbread Land, our popular Playgarden is “dressed up” for the holiday season. There is a nightly tree lighting with Santa (Gingerbread Man after Christmas) a toasty warming fire and more.

Dec. 14-23 and Dec. 26-30

Zanesville, Ohio (Muskingum County) Festival of Trees

Small-town Ohio doesn’t skimp on the Christmas cheer. Historic Zanesville, OH again will present their Festival of Trees, open to the public and for all ages. The Festival of Trees to will bring wonderment to those both young and old (and everyone in between).

The Festival of Trees is an Annual Holiday Tradition in Zanesville/Muskingum County and not to be missed for serious Christmas celebrators.
Visit the Muskingum County Welcome Center to start of the festival on November 30th from 5:00pm-8:00pm. Beautifully decorated trees and holiday decorations will be on display.

Then on November 30, come walk through the Festival of Trees 2017 entries from 10:00am-6:00pm. The Live Auction of over 200 festival entries begins on December 1st at 9:00am and ends at 6:00pm. Join in all day during the auction for networking, bidding and holiday cheer! The “Happy Hour” gathering at the auction will be from 3:30pm until 6:00pm.

Auction schedule will be posted at www.zmchamber.com the week of the event. For more information call 740-455-8282 or 800-743-2303.

Holiday Traditions: New and Old

Being that this will be the last blog before Christmas, it seemed appropriate to discuss some ideas that might help enhance your holiday experience with your family.

Many of our holiday rituals revolve around old family traditions that have been passed down through generations. Youth are often disinterested in things that or “old” or “not cool”. Passing down your family’s traditions – whether they be unique to your family or particular to your cultural heritage – can be an important and powerful way to bond with young people in your life. If you have cultural traditions, finding a fun way to teach them the history of the tradition can enrich their understanding of why your family does it what does, year after year, during the holidays.

While there is certainly nothing wrong with a child wanting and expecting a gift on Christmas, getting your children involved in the giving aspect is just as important as them receiving the Christmas you want for them. Taking them out to choose a coat or toy to donate to a local charity can help them understand the importance of community and charity. Or perhaps helping them prepare some food or treats for a needy family in your neighborhood would be a good way to spend some time together and teach them a valuable lesson. Helping elderly neighbors make their driveways and walkways safe in the winter weather might also be an option.

Whoever the child is in your life, you cannot just tell them they need to be charitable. You need to demonstrate the spirit of charity yourself. Make it a group activity.

Getting your young adults involved in prepping your home and meals for extended family and other guests can be a good way to demonstrate that the “magic of Christmas” takes a lot of work on someone’s part. Teaching them how to prepare family favorite recipes is a great idea as well.

And if you yourself are finding some traditions stale, get the young people in your life in on inventing new traditions. Let them be creative and come up with something they find relevant and fun. Or have them help you update an old tradition.

However you celebrate, we hope you find love, light and family and wish you the best for the coming New Year.

23rd Annual Festival of Trees, Zanesville, OH

The Zanesville Muskingum County Chamber of Commerce is hosting their 23 annual Festival of Trees.

Visit the Muskingum County Welcome Center begin the festival on November 30th from 5:00pm-8:00pm for the Miracle on Main Street. Beautifully decorated trees and holiday decorations will be on display Muskingum county residents and visitors to enjoy.

Then on December 1st, come walk through the Festival of Trees 2016 entries from 9:00am-6:00pm. The Live Auction of over 200 festival entries begins on December 2nd at 9:00am and ends at 6:00pm. Join us all day during the auction for networking, bidding and holiday cheer “Happy Hour” gathering at the auction will be from 3:30pm until 6:00pm.

The money raised for the Festival of Trees comes back to the Chamber of Commerce. They support the local business community and have been helping local business owners in a variety of ways since 1905.