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by Shawn Mosley
ĎTis the season to be jolly and this year the City of Allen hosts a variety of activities to bring the happy holidays home!
Annual Christmas Tree Lighting
Festivities begin Friday, December 5 with the Annual Christmas Tree Lighting in the Allen Civic Plaza beginning at 7 p.m. With hot chocolate, holiday carols and the customary lighting ceremony by the city council around the 35-foot evergreen tree, the event makes for a great family outing and a formal start to the holiday season. And, of course, the event wouldnít be complete without a surprise visit by Santa as he makes a quick stop to hear wish lists and provide the opportunity for parents to take a few photos. The event is free and open to the public.
Bring the family out on Saturday, December 6 and run through the streets of downtown Allen with Rudolph, Santa and the whole gang. Now boasting more than 2,000 runners, the Rudolph Run has quickly becoming one of the most successful events in the area. The day begins at 8 a.m. with a one-mile Fun Run ($15 race day entry fee) and concludes with a USATF registered 5K ($20 until November 30 or $25 race day entry fee). Find out more by calling 214-509-4810 or visit www.allenparks.org to download a registration brochure.
Pictures with Santa
Donít want to fight the holiday crowd to see Santa? Register for Pictures with Santa on Wednesday, December 10 from 12-2 p.m. and enjoy the experience without the hustle and bustle! The staff at Joe Farmer Recreation Center (1201 E. Bethany) will take your childís picture with Santa and even give you a holiday frame to display it in! The cost of the session is $5 and is intended for children ages 1-10 years. Please call 214-509-4750 to get signed up!
Lunch with Santa
Come have lunch with Santa on both Thursday and Friday, December 11-12 from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at Recreation Hall (105 South Anna) as he takes a break from his toy shop and refuels for the day. Children will be provided lunch and parents can bring their cameras to get a picture of the kids sitting with Santa. Register today by calling 214-509-4750 because space is limited for a spot on Santaís guest list! Lunch is intended for ages 1-6 years only and the cost is $8 per child.
Swim with Santa
On Wednesday, December 10 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. and Saturday, December 13 from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., hop in the leisure pool at the Don Rodenbaugh Natatorium (110 E. Rivercrest) and take a few laps with Santa just before he gears up for the holiday season. Before he swims, get your picture made and tell him just what youíve got on your wish list. The cost of the event is $10 and is open to all ages. Parents swim free with paid child. Children under the age of seven must be accompanied by an adult in the water. Fee includes picture with Santa, food and drinks. To learn more, call 214-509-4770.
Senior Adult Christmas Lunch
Rock around the Christmas tree at the Allen Senior Recreation Center, 451 St. Mary, on Friday, December 12 from noon-2 p.m. Dress in your 50ís attire and enjoy a festive diner-style meal while listening to Christmas music. A visit from Santa will round out the dayís events. Seating is limited, so please register by Friday, December 5. Cost of the event is $8. Call 214-509-4820 to sign up.
Gingerbread House Making
Bring the whole family out to Joe Farmer Recreation Center on Friday, December 19 and show off your creative side by building a gingerbread house for the holidays! Compare your handiwork to that of other families to see who can win the Most Creative or Most Edible awards. The fun lasts from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Itís a great way to spend time with the family. All materials will be provided. Register now by calling 214-509-4750.
The Edge Christmas Break Bash
Make your way out to The Edge at Allen Station Park on Saturday, December 20 from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. for a fun-filled day of inline, skateboard and bike competitions as well as dodge ball and video game tournaments to ring in the holiday break with a bash! The event is free and open to all ages. For more information, call 214-509-4760