Grove City has a number of upcoming events to kickstart the holiday season.
The Grove City Town Center will host annual Mistletoe Market and Winter Lights Parade on Saturday, Dec. 1. The market will be from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. The parade will kick off at 7:30 p.m.
Beginning at 6 p.m., the city also will be hosting other activities, including an ice sculptor on Grant Avenue; choirs caroling outside city hall; reindeer at Civic Place; horse-drawn wagon rides for a monetary, food or toy donation; and visits from Santa.
Parents can take photos of their children with Santa or receive one for a $5 contribution to T.W.I.G. 184 benefitting Nationwide Children’s Hospital.
Donations of money, food or personal hygiene products for the Grove City Food Pantry and of toys and gift cards for the Jackson Township Firefighters for Kids holiday toy program also will be collected on the southeast corner of Park Street.
This is the fourth year of the Mistletoe Market, said Grove City Town Center executive director Andy Furr. The event is a good chance for people to get some holiday shopping down and enjoy some good food, he added.
“It was originally designed to help bring people down to the Town Center,” he said. “It’s a nice, family fun day.”
The market will feature feature handmade-craft vendors as well as food trucks.
“We’ve got 23 vendors right now,” Furr said on Nov. 15. “Our maximum capacity is 36.”
Returning to the market this year are ceramics class students from Grove City High School. They will be selling hot chocolate and coffee in handmade mugs with the proceeds going toward Autism Awareness. This is the group’s second year at the market.
“We’re very proud to have those folks down here for a very charitable cause,” Furr said. “We’ve already had people asking if they’ll be coming back this year.”
Other craft vendors in the market include lotions, soaps and skin products from Live Love Dew; seasonal arrangement and gift baskets from Wendy Rohr; products from Rodney Eakins’ World of Wonders; vintage jewelry and glass stands from Christie Laffin; and more.
Food vendors include Sue Terre’s Food Affair, Paddy Wagon and My Place or Yours food truck.
The market also will feature live entertainment in the city council chambers throughout the day. Performers include Ukulele Cowboy Society, Christy Angeletti and Jeff Reed.
The parade route will remain unchanged from previous years, Furr said.
The parade will begin at Park Street Intermediate School; proceed north on Wilbur Avenue, west on Columbus Street, south on Broadway and east on Park Street; and ending back at Park Street Intermediate.
As of Nov. 15, there were 13 entries signed up for the parade, including the marching bands of Central Crossing, Grove City and Grove City Christian high schools.
“We’ll get quite a few more,” Furr said. “At last year’s parade, the rear end of the parade actually touched the front end.”
Applications for the parade are open through Nov. 24, and the entry fee is $35, with the proceeds going toward the Grove City Food Pantry.
There are two rules for decorating parade floats, Furr said: no Santa or Mrs. Claus, and they must be lit.
“Folks go all out and light them up quite nicely,” Furr said. “It’s always been impressive.”
The Grove City Arts Council hosts its Christmas Art Market and Exhibit in the City Hall lobby from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum will offers a historic view of the holidays including decorations, musical instruments and contests from 5 to 9 p.m.
More information about the events is available online at grovecitytowncenter.org and grovecityohio.gov.
During the festivities, drivers are asked to show extra caution when driving near the road blocks and on Kingston Avenue behind Park Street Intermediate School due to increased pedestrian traffic.
A number of streets will be closed including:
Park Street west of Broadway to Front Street beginning at noon Friday through 6 p.m. Sunday; Broadway, south of Grant Avenue to north of Grove City Road, and Park Street, from Broadway east to Arbutus Avenue, from 4 p.m. through 9 p.m. Saturday; and Park Street west of Haughn, Wilbur Avenue, Columbus Street from Wilbur Avenue west to Broadway and Broadway from Columbus Street south to Grant Avenue from 7:15 p.m. to the end of the parade.