The cities of Groveport and Canal Winchester are preparing to welcome the holiday season with all the trimmings -- and Santa Claus, of course.

Groveport's Heritage Park, 551 Wirt Road, will host the city's traditional Heritage Holiday from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30, and from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1.

A Madison Township fire truck will bring Santa to the park at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 30, when Mayor Lance Westcamp and Santa will light the city's Christmas tree.

Children can visit Santa and Mrs. Claus both days in the park's historic log house.

"Moving it to the park was fantastic," Groveport City Council President Shawn Cleary said of relocating the event from Town Hall two years ago. "The lighting that the parks and recreation department has done is really nice. It's really beautiful."

The Groveport High School band will perform holiday music Nov. 30.

Other activities include ice carving, a craft station and horse-drawn carriage rides around Palm Pond Nov. 30. Plans for Dec. 1 include live reindeer, a petting zoo, carriage rides and bounce house.

The city's community affairs, parks and recreation and facilities departments plan the free event.

The Groveport Recreation Center, 7370 Groveport Road, also will host lunch with Santa from 1 to 3 p.m. Dec. 9. Tickets cost $6 and are sold at the recreation center. To register, call Juli Pintz at 614-836-1000, ext. 1513, or email her at jpintz@groveport.org.

Canal Winchester's free public event, Christmas in the Village, spans two days, from 6 to 9 p.m. Dec. 7 and from 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 8.

Planned events include Santa visits, a holiday craft bazaar, ice sculpting, a gingerbread house contest, train displays and more.

Activities will take place on the sidewalks and streets of downtown Canal Winchester as well as inside several businesses around the city's municipal office building, 36 S. High St.

Santa will arrive each night to light the Christmas tree at Stradley Park, behind the municipal building.

The BrockStrong Light up the Night Holiday Lights Parade begins at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 7.

"If you can drive it or ride it, you can decorate it with holiday lights," according to the parade website, cwholidaylightsparade.com. "Christmas music, sure. Let your imagination 'Light up' our night. The only rule is No Fake Santas! We have the real deal in our parade!"

A Christmas trolley will make its way through downtown, stopping on South High Street at the Frances Steube Community Center and at the Railroad Depot.

More information is available at www.destinationcw.org or www.canalwinchesterohio.gov.

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