Deck the Halls, y'all

Port Townsend Main Street gears up for community Christmas events

Posted 11/30/22

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

Whether its the cheesy Hallmark movies playing nonstop on the TV, the local businesses around town decked out in bright lights and green-and-red …

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Deck the Halls, y'all

Port Townsend Main Street gears up for community Christmas events

Posted

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

Whether its the cheesy Hallmark movies playing nonstop on the TV, the local businesses around town decked out in bright lights and green-and-red decor, or excitable kids penning and sending their holiday wishlist to Santa, the holiday season is all about connection and celebration with loved ones and the community.

The Port Townsend Main Street program is gearing up a wide assortment of events and activities that are sure to spark joy in anyone, young and old.

“We’re excited for holidays and have lots of fun activities planned and holiday events around town and Uptown,” said Mari Mullen, executive director of Port Townsend Main Street.

Beyond just enjoying the festivities, “there’s a lot of different ways to support your local economy,” Mullen added.

It doesn’t take much to notice that Christmas is coming in downtown Port Townsend, with the assortment of tree lights, garland wrapped around storefronts, and green-and-red decorations adorned on Victorian buildings.

Around 100 trees in Port Townsend have been wrapped in lights this year, Mullen said.

“It’s very festive in town; we really want people to have fun this year,” she added.

Throughout the weeks leading up to Dec. 25, a whole host of holiday activities will be going on in town like the Kiwanis Choo Choo train, the 28th annual Uptown Gingerbread Contest, Last Minute Holiday Gift-wrapping, and more.

While Small Business Saturday wrapped up, next on the list of events is Ring in the Holidays coming up on Saturday, Dec. 3. Participants will be able to sing Christmas carols with local a capella group Wild Rose Chorale, create and keep ornaments at the Tyler Street Plaza tent, take photos with Santa and the Kiwanis Choo Choo near the Flagship Landing building, take selfies with cardboard cut-outs, and light the Christmas tree at the Haller Fountain.

For those who are not black belts in gift-wrapping, the Kiwanis Key Club and Rotary Interact Club students will lend a helping hand on Dec. 10 and wrap locally-purchased gifts with flare at the Tyler Street Plaza tent.

One of the final activities — and possibly one of the most highly anticipated — is the 28th annual Uptown Gingerbread Contest, with participants eligible to enter their gingerbread creations at the Port Townsend Public Library from Dec. 1 to Dec. 11.

This year’s contest marks the second straight year of the library hosting the competition, with librarians eagerly anticipating the creative gingerbread submissions for 2022.

“It’s so joyful to carry on this beautiful tradition that started in Uptown,” said library director Melody Sky Weaver (née Eisler).

There are five separate categories for the contest: Children 12 and under; Most Creative; Most Literary; People’s Choice; and Housing for All.

Local artist Max Grover will be judging the gingerbread submissions.

“I love how it brings people of all ages together to be creative,” Mullen said. “This is the perfect way to show our community’s creativity, and there’s been so many creative submissions in the past.”

Last year’s gingerbread house contest included a child’s rendition of a school bus, an exquisitely-shaped lighthouse, and even a dragon.

Better yet, the library is offering free gingerbread kits to make sure people of all incomes can be a part of the festivities.

One of Weaver’s favorite elements of the contest is “the library smelling like gingerbread the whole month. It’s just a really magical time,” she said.

People can learn more about dates, rules, and other information by visiting the library’s website at ptpubliclibrary.org/library/page/28th-annual-gingerbread-contest.

Another can’t-miss part of the holidays in Port Townsend is the enchanting lights and decorations across the city.

Sparkling white lights will be strung around, new illuminated snowflakes are coming to Uptown, and the Haller Fountain and historic Bell Tower downtown will be illuminated.

To learn more about all the holiday happenings with the Port Townsend Main Street program, go to ptmainstreet.org.

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