Santa is comin’ to town

Santa is comin’ to town on Saturday.

Santa and Mrs. Claus in downtown Elk River last year. They’ll be back again Saturday, Dec. 15.

Santa and Mrs. Claus will be at River’s Edge Commons Park in downtown Elk River from noon–3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15. Accompanying them will be baby animals including reindeer, a camel, a bighorn sheep and a whitetail deer.

Santa will be passing out gift bags to children, toy soldiers will be dancing and Santa’s mailbox will be ready to receive mail from children.

Businesses will have special offers and provide treats. Food and donations will be collected for the Elk River-based CAER food shelf, and people making donations will get their names on the ribbons that go around the tree.

Also downtown this holiday season, the Elk River Area Arts Alliance Holiday Art and Gift Show and Sale runs through Dec. 26; an artist reception is from 1–4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15 at the Arts Alliance, 312 Jackson Ave., Elk River. Regular gallery hours are Wednesday–Saturday, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.

Other holiday events this weekend:

Christmas Renaissance Festival is Saturday

A Christmas Renaissance Festival featuring two stages of continuous entertainment will be held Saturday, Dec. 15 from 11 a.m.–5 p.m. at the Boys & Girls Club, 905 Sixth St., Elk River. The event is sponsored by Command Performance Choirs and will include crafts, entertainment and food vendors.

Zimmerman church hosts Nativity scene

St. John Lutheran Church in Zimmerman (the green church west of downtown on County Road 4) will host a live Nativity scene, 6 to 8 p.m., Dec. 15 and 16, behind the church.  This will be a large-scale production of a re-creation of the Christmas story. The event is free and open to everyone.  There will be bonfires, free apple cider, coffee and hot chocolate. There will also be lentil soup and flatbread.

‘The Nutcracker’ to be performed Dec. 15

The North Ballet Youth Company invites the community to their annual performance of “The Nutcracker” Saturday, Dec. 15, 1 and 4:30 p.m., at Zabee Theater at Elk River High School, 900 School St. Local youth and adults will be partnering with professionals from Ballet West in Utah.

Tickets, starting at $10, can be purchased online at www.northballetyouthcompany.org.

Skating Holiday Spectacular, Skate with Santa set

Elk River Figure Skating Club’s Holiday Spectacular, a mini ice show featuring skaters performing to holiday classics will begin at 2:30 p.m., followed by Skate with Santa from 3:45–5:15 p.m. at the Elk River Arena, 1000 School St. Sunday, Dec. 16.

Both events are free to the public. There will be free cocoa and cider provided, as well as a bake sale before and after the holiday spectacular with proceeds benefitting the figure skating club. Food donations also will be accepted for the CAER food shelf.

SOAR concerts to feature local singers

The SOAR Regional Arts Holiday Concert will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16 at St. Michael Catholic School Stage, St. Michael. The performances will feature students from Otsego, Rogers, Albertville and St. Michael school districts along with special guests: Jamie Cassidy, Terrell Beaudry, Kristen Rokke, Ellen Beaudry and Debra Bishop.

Tickets are all $10 and available at Coborn’s in Albertville and Marketplace in St. Michael. Visit www.soararts.com for more information about the concert, a silent auction and to buy tickets online.

Advent worship service is Sunday at Union Church

Due to the weather Dec. 9, the Advent service at Union Congregational Church, United Church of Christ was postponed to Sunday, Dec. 16 at 4 p.m. The church invites the community “for an Advent worship service of music, readings and reflections to acknowledge that God’s word comes to shine light into darkness. All are welcome as we anticipate new beginnings and open ourselves to the deeper meaning of Christmas,” according to their press release. A candle-lighting will be held and there will be a remembrance table for photographs of loved ones.

Childcare will be provided. The church is located at 1118 Fourth St. N.W., downtown Elk River. Call 763-441-1203 for more information.

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