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Steeped in tradition, this weekend’s 'Christmas in Warrensburgh' features new events

A youngster encounters Santa Claus during the 2012 edition of Christmas in Warrensburgh. This annual festival, which emphasizes traditional activities and values, is to be held Saturday Dec. 7 and Sunday Dec. 8 throughout Warrensburg. This year's 25th annual edition of the fest features a variety of new family-oriented attractions. (See article for schedule and details).
Photo by John Franchini

A youngster encounters Santa Claus during the 2012 edition of Christmas in Warrensburgh. This annual festival, which emphasizes traditional activities and values, is to be held Saturday Dec. 7 and Sunday Dec. 8 throughout Warrensburg. This year's 25th annual edition of the fest features a variety of new family-oriented attractions. (See article for schedule and details). Photo by John Franchini

— While many people spend early-December weekends rushing around between malls to shop for consumer goods, others head for Warrensburg to experience the traditional ambiance and activities of the holiday season.

Christmas in Warrensburgh, set this year for Saturday Dec. 7 through Sunday Dec. 8, is the treasured event that’s entranced both local residents and visitors for a quarter-century with its array of activities that embrace a bygone era.

This unparalleled celebration of the holidays features craft demonstrations and sales, caroling, church bazaars, children’s activities, traditional acoustic music, gift shopping, a hometown tree-lighting ceremony and profound hospitality throughout the community.

For this 25th year of the family-friendly festival that annually heralds in the holidays, several new attractions have been planned.

As the festival is known for highlighting the more reflective aspects of the Christmas season, a living nativity has been planned, featuring local children. This scenario is to be held from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday Dec. 7 in front of Alexander funeral home, on Main St. midtown. The event is complete with caroling and refreshments.

Also new this year is mule-drawn wagon rides, both Saturday and Sunday, conducted in front of the Warrensburg Senior center on Main St. just south of the historic town bandstand.

Also new at this year’s edition of the festival is an indoor holiday market — only on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. — that features locally produced crafts as well as produce from area farmers.

Also a first for the festival is two Breakfast with Santa events, rather than one. They’ll be conducted from 10 a.m. to noon on Sunday at both New Way Lunch downtown and Bill’s Restaurant uptown, both on Main St.

Event founder Teresa Whalen said Sunday it’s been heartwarming to see more and more people each year discovering the holiday traditions that Christmas in Warrensburg emphasizes.

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