Holiday calendar: A listing of local events

Here is a sample of some of the holiday happenings in the Elk River area.

Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 26 and 27: Youth Theatre Workshop presents “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” 2 and 7 p.m. Nov. 26; 2 and 6 p.m. Nov. 27 at the Elk River High School Little Theater. For more information go to

Saturday, Nov. 26-Saturday, Dec. 24: Elk River Area Arts Alliance Holiday Art and Gift Show and Sale, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesdays-Saturdays at the Arts Alliance, 312 Jackson Ave., Elk River. An artist reception will be held Dec. 10. See the Dec. 10 entry.

Monday, Nov. 28: ‘Sounds of the Season’ concert, Crown Room at the Wellstead of Rogers, 20500 S. Diamond Lake Rd., Rogers. Holiday cookies and cider will be served at 6:30 p.m.; concert by the Brooklyn Park Community Band from 7 to 8 p.m. Free-will donation.
Contact Annette at 763-428-1981 for more information.

Wednesday, Nov. 30: Christmas Cantata, 7 p.m. at St. John Lutheran Church, 13045 Fremont Ave., Zimmerman.

Thursday, Dec. 1: Guardian Angels+Elim Hospice Memorial Tree Lighting. 7 p.m., Elk River Dining Site, 350 Evans Ave., Elk River. To purchase a bulb(s) in memory of a loved one, call 763-552-2160.

Friday, Dec. 2: Elk River High School band program’s Jingle Ball Swing Dance. Features the ERHS Jazz Bands, along with a performance by the North Suburban Big Band. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Group swing dance lessons will be offered by Cindy and Terry Gardner from 7-8 p.m. Live music from 8-10 p.m. Tickets are available at the door and are $4 for students, $6 adults and $15 for family. The event will be held the ERHS Commons, 900 School St., and is open to the public. For more information, go to


Lisa Barry

Friday, Dec. 2: Second Annual Candlelight and Christmas Tea, 6:30 p.m., Central Lutheran Church, 1103 School St., Elk River. Women are encouraged to bring their own tea cup and saucer for a cup of tea along with a holiday dessert followed by Christmas carols and the message, “Making Room for Jesus,” from Lisa Barry, KTIS radio host. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased in the church office. Presale only; ticket deadline is Nov. 30.

Friday, Dec. 2 and Saturday, Dec. 3: “The Secret Garden.” 7 p.m., Dec. 2 and 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. Dec. 3 at Elk River High School Little Theater, 900 School St., Elk River. The show is a musical adaptation of the literary classic featuring singing, acting and dancing with a cast of 9-16 year old “Showtime!” Front Porch Musical Theatre students.
Limited seating. Tickets: adults $8, students/children ages 4-17 $5, and under 4 free. Tickets can be ordered/purchased at Signature School of Music; 20998 134th Ave N., Suite 109, Rogers or at the door for each performance, depending on availability. For more information go to or call Signature School of Music at 763-670-8882.

Saturday, Dec. 3: Celebrate the Season in Zimmerman.10 a.m.-4 p.m. Variety of activities including a holiday boutique, face painting and cookie decorating at the

Scott McDonald decorated a cooke at last year's Celebrate the Season event in Zimmerman.

American Legion, and a number of activities around town including professional photos with Santa at  Art Reflections (9:30 a.m.-2 p.m.), horse-drawn sleigh rides at Johnson’s Hardware Hank (11 a.m.-3 p.m.) and a word scramble/scavenger hunt with a $200 cash prize at the Zimmerman Civic Club’s booth at Nelson Nursery (11 a.m.-3 p.m.). A tree lighting ceremony will be at 4:30 p.m. at the corner of Second Street and Fremont Avenue.

Saturday, Dec. 3: Cookies with Santa, hosted by the Elk River YMCA, 13337 Business Center Dr. 10 a.m.-noon. Children will have the chance to visit with Santa, decorate cookies, create arts and crafts and enjoy a Christmas movie. Free and open to  the public.

Saturday, Dec. 3: Toy-making workshop, 1 to 3 p.m. at the Oliver H. Kelley Farm.
Visitors will have the option of making several 19th-century toys, including a ball-and-cup game, buzz saws, pick-up sticks and corn husk dolls. All tools and materials are provided. Fee is $5, $4 for Minnesota Historical Society members. Reservations are required; call 763-441-6896. The farm is located 2.5 miles southeast of downtown Elk River, off Highway 10.

Saturday, Dec. 3: Kids’ Winter Book Fest, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Reading Frenzy BookShop, 12530 Fremont Ave. #200, Zimmerman. Five children and young adult authors, an illustrator, young writer’s contest, crafts and prizes. Authors confirmed are Sheila O’Conner, “Sparrow Road;” Craig Yelle, “Reclaiming Ter Chadain;” Ryan Jacobson, “Lost in the Wild,” Can you Survive – Mount Everest, Call of the Wild, and Sherlock Holmes – Choose your Path Books, “Minnesota Hauntings;” David Mather, “Frog in the House;” Bob Fulton, “Pickle Bumps for Baby Dill and illustrator Derek Anderson, “Hot Rod Hamster” and Little Quack Books.

Saturday, Dec. 3: Red Barn Holiday Event, Trott Brook Farms Park Red Barn,18294 Trott Brook Parkway, Elk River. 1-5 p.m. Pictures with Santa, Kalidescope face painting, chair massage by Healthsource Chiropractic and Progressive Rehab. Local vendors and craftspeople represented including Norwex, Pampered Chef, Thirty-One, Dove Chocolate, Willow House, Anne Made –Handmade Crochet and Vault Denim.
Bring a canned good for Elk River’s CAER food shelf and be entered into a prize drawing.

Sunday, Dec. 4: Elk River Lions Breakfast with Santa. 8 a.m.-1 p.m. at Lions Park Center, 1104 Lions Park Dr., Elk River.
The menu includes regular, walnut, blueberry and chocolate chip pancakes, sausage and beverages. Santa will be at the breakfast. Free will donation.

Sunday, Dec. 4: Zimmerman Lions Breakfast with Santa. 8 a.m.-noon in the Zimmerman Lions Civic Building at the ball park. The menu includes breakfast sandwiches, rolls, coffee and  juice. There will be a cookie decorating station and Santa will have his Lionel Trains set up for all to see. Free will offering with all the proceeds going to Neighbors Helping Neighbors.

Sunday, Dec. 4: Rogers Lions Club Breakfast with Santa. 8 a.m. to noon at the Rogers Community Center. The Lions will be serving pancakes,  French toast and sausage. Free will offering.
Kids who bring a canned food donation for the C.R.O.S.S. food shelf in Rogers will receive a free picture with Santa.
There will be a raffle for a 40-inch television. People do not need to be present to win. All proceeds will go to C.R.O.S.S.

The Land of Lakes Choirboys caroling last year in Elk River.

Monday, Dec. 5: Holiday Mystery Author Dinner with New York Times best-selling author William Kent Krueger, David Holmes and Colin Nelson. 6:30 p.m. at Papa’s Italian Restaurant, 26140 3rd St. E., Zimmerman. Tickets are $30 each or buy two or more for $25 each, available at Reading Frenzy BookShop, 12530 Fremont Ave. #200, Zimmerman.

Friday, Dec. 9: Land of Lakes Choirboys Annual Christmas Concert and Bake Sale.Bake sale starts at 5:30 p.m.; concert at 7 p.m. at St. Andrew’s Catholic Church, 566 Fourth St., Elk River. Free-will offering taken at the concert.

Scrooge is coming to Elk River on Dec. 10.

Saturday, Dec. 10: “An Elk River Christmas Carol” performed by Minneapolis-based radio play troupe Deadbeats Radio Theater. 7:30 p.m., Elk River High School’s Little Theater, 900 School St., Elk River. Tickets $15 adult, $12 senior, $10 student.
Tickets on sale at Coborn’s,19425 Evans St., Elk River and the Arts Alliance, 312 Jackson Ave. Elk River. For more information call 763-441-4725 or go to


Saturday, Dec. 10: Downtown Holiday Celebration. Santa and live animals, including reindeer, will be at River’s Edge Commons Park in downtown Elk River from noon-3 p.m. Other activities include the Command Performance choir singing at Olde Main Eatery and in the park, nutcrackers marching and dancing and there will be a mail box for letters to Santa. Downtown businesses will have special offers and promotions. There also will be a box in the park for toy donations for Gifts Anonymous. Sponsored by the River’s Edge Downtown Business Association and Elk River Park and Recreation. For details, find the River’s Edge Downtown Business Association on Facebook.

Saturday, Dec. 10: Elk River Area Arts Alliance Artist Reception, 2-5 p.m. at the Arts Alliance, 312 Jackson Ave., Elk River. The Arts Alliance will be open from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. that day with face painting and other events.

Santa belted out some Ho, Ho, Hos during a holiday event in downtown Elk River last year.

Saturday, Dec. 10: Santa Day, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at Otsego City Hall, 8899 Nashua Ave. Hosted by the Otsego Parks and Recreation Commission, this ninth annual event includes visits with Santa Claus, cookies and hot chocolate and horse-drawn sleigh rides (dress warmly). Quality Photo will be present to take photos of children with Santa or bring a camera and take your own. Attendees encouraged to bring food for the CAER food shelf and/or toys for Gifts Anonymous.
Free except for Quality Photo’s pictures with Santa.

Saturday, Dec. 10: Sixth Annual Sherburne History Center Christmas Tree Festival, 10 a.m. to noon. Activities include ornament making and other crafts, a scavenger hunt, and making cards for the troops.  At 11:30 a.m. Santa Claus will arrive   Please bring a non-perishable donation for the local food shelf.
There also will be refreshments and  Sherburne County Historical Society members will get a double discount (20 percent) in the Sand Burr Gift Shop. For more information, 763-261-4433 or 763-262-4433 (metro line). The event is free.
Sherburne History Center is located at 10775 27th Ave SE in Becker.

Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 10 and 11 : Christmas on the Farm, 2 p.m. both days at the Oliver H. Kelley Farm. Take a 75-minute guided tour that includes a hike along portions of the nature trail, the historic house and the livestock pens. Discover how farm families and their animals coped with shorter days, colder temperatures and the upcoming holidays 150 years ago. Enjoy a horse or oxen-drawn bobsled or wagon ride. Dress for outdoor weather. Warm refreshments follow in the visitor center.
Reservations are required, call 763-441-6896. Fee is $7; $6 for Minnesota Historical Society members; free for children age 5 and under. The farm is located 2.5 miles southeast of downtown Elk River, off Highway 10.

Saturday, Dec. 10 and Dec. 17: Ride free on Northstar trains to the Target Holidazzle Parade in downtown Minneapolis. The special-event train will leave Big Lake Station at 3:06 p.m. both days and, after stops at Elk River, Anoka, Coon Rapids and Fridley, will arrive in downtown Minneapolis at 3:55 p.m., giving parade goers extra time to enjoy downtown attractions. The parade kicks off on Nicollet Mall at 6:30 p.m.
Once Northstar customers reach downtown Minneapolis, getting to Nicollet Mall is an easy – and free – ride on light rail, which connects at Target Field Station. Return Northstar service leaves downtown Minneapolis at 8 p.m.
The free-ride offer is available on Northstar trains after 3 p.m. Dec. 10 and 17. Metro Transit buses and light rail will be free from 4-8 p.m. on Dec. 10 and 17 as well.
Get more information about the parade at Learn more about Northstar service at

Sunday, Dec. 11: Holiday vendor shopping event featuring 15 vendors, 2-5 p.m. at Broadway Pizza and Banquet Center, 16754 Highway 10, Elk River. Bring a new toy for Toys for Tots and enter to win prizes from the vendors. Free pizza while you shop.

Monday, Dec.12: Rogers High School music department presents “Holiday Spectacular!” which includes performances by the RHS Choirs, Jazz Band, Concert Band and the Symphonic Band. 6:30 p.m. in the Rogers High School commons, 21000 141st Ave., Rogers. Free.

Tuesday, Dec. 13: Elk River High School’s Winter Spectacular Holiday Concert, 7 p.m. in the school’s Zabee Theater, 900 School St., Elk River. Free.
For more information, go to

Saturday, Dec. 17: Christmas Bird Count. 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Join the Friends of Sherburne to count birds on and around the Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge. Participants will meet at the refuge office, 17076 293rd Ave., Zimmerman. To pre-register, call Dean Kleinhans at 763-389-1774.

Sunday, Dec. 18: Command Performance Choirs presents Christmas Around the World. 6 p.m. at Elk River High School’s Zabee Theater, 900 School St., Elk River. Tickets are $12 for adults and $7 for children and are available at or at the door.

Sunday, Dec. 18: Skate with Santa. The Elk River Figure Skating Club will be featured from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Elk River Arena, 1000 School St. Santa joins the ice at Open Skating from 3:45 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. Admission is free and cookies and cider will be provided. Food donations will be accepted and will benefit local food shelves.

Monday, Dec. 19: St. John Lutheran School Choir and Band Christmas Concert. 10 a.m., 9231 Viking Blvd., Nowthen. For more information call 763-441-6616 or go to

Tuesday, Dec. 20: St. John Lutheran School Choir and Band Christmas Concert. 7 p.m., 9231 Viking Blvd., Nowthen. Refreshments following the concert. For more information call 763-441-6616 or go to

Saturday, Dec. 24: Live Nativity Worship. 4:30 p.m., just north of St. John Lutheran Church, 13045 Fremont Ave.,  Zimmerman.