MONTE VISTA—Monte Vista is the place to be the weekend of Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 when it comes to holiday spirit.
Friday kicks off the weekend’s Christmas festivities with the Monte Vista Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 Holiday Bazaar from noon to 6 p.m. at the Church of the Nazarene Gymnasium, 1106 2nd Ave. More than 30 local artists, crafters and business entrepreneurs will be there selling Christmas gift goodies such as essential oils, candles, self-defense items, clothing, jewelry, woodworks, scarves, handbags, soaps and lotions and baked goods.
The bazaar extends to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and also offers a kid’s craft corner and photography booth. In the craft corner, kids can make handmake things like wreaths, candy canes, angels, reindeers and snowmen. The photography booth will have cute holiday masks and a local photographer there for kiddie and adult photo ops. “The camera will hook up to a printer and we will also have a limited number of frames available,” said the chamber’s event planner Tamara Bachicha.
The city also organized a holiday decorating contest for all the businesses in town, which will be judged on Friday and announced sometime during Saturday’s Christmas parade. Top prizes are $75, $50 and $25, which the city is asking winners to donate to their favorite charity. Flor Arestegui with Don Tomas Bakery said she’ll have her usual holiday décor donning the bakery’s walls and windows, as well as Christmas pastries and cookies for sale.
On Saturday, Dec. 1, Stars and Strikes is starting the holiday merriments with Breakfast with Santa from 8 to 11 a.m. The bowling alley’s owner Starla Encinas has been putting on the breakfast for about six years now, which includes a pancake bar with a variety of toppings, eggs, bacon and sausage. Cost is $5 for kids under 12 and $7 for adults. Santa will be on hand to visit with kids and for photo opportunities. “We’ll have plenty of food and Santa will be in a little room that we decorate in a different theme each year, said Encinas.
Vali 3 Theater will show a 1 p.m. matinee of “A Christmas Story.” The movie is free but donations will be accepted for Kids Connection.
At 5:30 p.m. there will be a traditional Christmas tree lighting and caroling at Fullenwider Park, on Highway 160, adjacent to the chamber information center. This year’s Christmas parade of lights is themed “A Christmas Story.” The parade begins at 6:30 p.m. at Stars and Strikes and will weave down Second Ave, Washington St., First Ave. and Adams St., to end back at the bowling alley.
“After the parade, we’ll have Christmas music, hot cocoa and bonfires on Adams Street to help everyone warm up,” said Jennifer Becker, who is organizing this year’s parade. There will also be a second Santa Claus as well as cookies, hot cocoa and coffee in the Fassett Building.
The SLV Roller Derby gals are signed up for this year’s parade of lights. “Sugar and Spice and our bruises on ice,” said Mackenzie Monter— a.k.a. Blondii Badgut on the derby team. “There will hopefully be about 10 to 15 of us, and we will be rolling down the street having a roller skate party, dancing to holiday tunes, dressed and all lit-up with holiday cheer.”
Another exciting parade participant will be the fire department, which will carry Santa Claus in one of their trucks. Then Santa will get a police escort back to Stars and Strikes later in the evening.