The Downtown St. Charles Partnership ushers in the Christmas season this week with the Holiday Homecoming — a two-day celebration that includes the Lighting of the Lights on Friday evening, Nov. 23, 2012, and the Electric Christmas Parade on Saturday night, Nov. 24, 2012.
New to the Holiday Homecoming this year is a Christmas tree lot, which will be set up along the east side of 1st Street, south of Route 64. Swans’ Christmas Trees has been selling trees in the area for many years and will sell trees and garland throughout the holiday season in the downtown.
Also new to the Holiday Homecoming is a free holiday movie Home Alone at 2 p.m. Friday at the Arcada Theatre’s big screen.
The Lighting of the Lights ceremony is scheduled at 5 p.m. Friday in the First Street Plaza and will be led by Mayor Donald DeWitte, with special appearances by the St. Charles North and East High School Chorales, and Santa and Mrs. Claus.
The Holiday Homecoming continues with more activities on Saturday, which is Small Business Saturday nationally, a day when people are encouraged, at the start of the holiday season, to shop at a local small business.
The day will include a free showing of The Polar Express at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the Arcada Theatre’s big screen.
Also planned are horse-drawn sleigh rides from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday beginning at the 1st Street Plaza; and visits with Santa from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1 to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 23 in the First Street Plaza Santa House.
All Holiday Homecoming events and activities are free of charge.
The Electric Christmas Parade steps off at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, and Downtown St. Charles Partnership founders Jack Wagner, Jim Martin, Sharon Oie, and Dave Lencioni will serve as grand marshals for the event, part of the Downtown St. Charles Partnership’s 20th anniversary year.
The Electric Christmas Parade also will feature Miss Illinois, as well as lighted entries by many local organizations including the Boy Scouts, the Filling Station and the St. Charles Breakfast Rotary.