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Annual Afton Village Holiday runs Dec. 4-5

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Afton’s Old Village will be transformed into a winter wonderland next week. 

The annual Afton Village Holiday, sponsored by the Afton Area Business Association, will take place Dec. 4-5 in downtown Afton. 

“Every year it just gets bigger and better,” event co-organizer Deb Larson said.  

The two-day event will feature “Candlelight Night” and “Family Day.” 

“Candlelight Night,” which will be from 5-9 p.m. Friday, will be more geared towards couples, as a kind of date night, Larson said. 

Events will kick off at 6 p.m. with a tree lighting ceremony in Town Square Park. 

Not only will the ceremony feature the lighting of a 30-foot tall pine tree, but there will also be carolers, comments from the mayor and event an appearance by Santa Claus. 

“It’s a nice way for the community to come together,” Larson said. 

Other offerings on Friday include romantic horse and wagon rides through the village, strolling carolers, complimentary wine and appetizers, free chair massages and complimentary gift wrapping. 

New this year will be two separate holiday gift boutiques, located at Selma’s Ice Cream Parlour and in the Afton Old Bank building. 

“We’ll have more handmade gifts this year,” Larson said. 

The Kohn’s Kraft Holiday shopping boutique, at Selma’s, and the Good Tidings Gift Shop, at Afton Old Bank, will feature various handmade items from local artists and artisans such as jewelry, handmade soaps, mittens and scarves, ornaments, cards, wine glasses, wood crafts, paintings and more. 

“We’re really excited about this,” event co-organizer Raenette Manderfeld-Pung said. 

Candlelight Night will also stay true to its name since there will be many lights hung throughout the village in addition to torches and bonfires. 

“The whole village lights up,” Larson said. “The village will be aglow.”  

Family Day, which will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, will feature many of the same events as Friday night, such as the horse and wagon rides, the holiday shopping boutiques and strolling carolers. 

However, Saturday will also feature additional events, geared towards families and children. 

Two of the most popular events will be back again this year with the stocking promotion and breakfast and photos with Santa Claus at the Afton House Inn. 

For the stocking promotion the first 300 children will receive a holiday stocking, which they can take from shop to shop collecting goodies. 

Other fun events on Saturday will include a letters to Santa Claus station at Pathway Insurance, a vintage model train at the Afton Historical Museum and holiday-themed crafts throughout the village. 

The Afton Village Holiday will also encourage visitors to have the giving spirit with its “mitten tree” at Baglio’s of Afton, where visitors can hang mittens, hats and scarves to be donated to Valley Outreach in Stillwater. 

Food donation boxes, for Valley Outreach, will also be set up at Baglio’s and the Afton Historical Museum. 

Larson said she hopes this year’s Afton VIllage Holiday is just as successful as years past. 

“Afton is just a beautiful town for a two-day old-fashioned holiday celebration,” she said. 

The Afton Village Holiday will be from 5-9 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4, and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5. Visit exploreafton.com/afton-village-holiday for a full schedule of events. 

Amber Kispert-Smith

Amber Kispert-Smith has been the schools and Afton reporter at the Woodbury Bulletin since 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked as a reporter for Press Publications in White Bear Lake.

(651) 702-0976
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