Holiday events planned for weekend 

The Kirby Christmas Train is a 20-minute-long ride through the woods among lights and holiday music displays.
The Kirby Christmas Train is a 20-minute-long ride through the woods among lights and holiday music displays. (Photo by Suzette Cook)

With Christmas right around the corner, family members and friends focus on buying presents, choosing a tree, cleaning, and decorating the house for when the company arrives. During all the Christmas chaos, it is easy to forget all the fun events happening in the community.  

Luckily, here is a preview of this weekend’s Christmas fun.  

Friday 

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Ornament Making Class 

Alachua Flowers and Tuxedo Rentals will host a keepsake ornament class from 4-7 p.m. on Friday, 14520 Main St. in Alachua.

The class costs $10. Each visitor will make two ornaments and decorate a bag to bring their creations home. 

Festival of Lights Opening Night  

The Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park, 11016 Lillian Saunders Dr. in White Springs, will begin the 2022 Festival of Lights at 5 p.m.  

A ticket costs $4, and the last ticket sold nightly will be at 8:30 p.m. It will feature complimentary popcorn, hot cocoa, marshmallows by the bonfire, Santa, food and craft vendors, crafts, and more. 

Light the Village 

The free event is at the Haile Village Center, 9158 SW 51st Road J103, from 5-9 p.m. Visitors will enjoy holiday music, train rides, face painting, and Santa. The Village Center supplies snacks, hot chocolate, cookies, and food from the Village’s restaurants and other local food trucks.  

Saturday  

Chiefland Christmas Festival  

The free festival, located at 808 Main St., from 8 a.m.-9 p.m., features a Rudolph Run, Christmas Festival, a Parade, and photos with Santa. There will be a tree lighting, bonfire inflatables, and more.  

City of Alachua Christmas Parade  

The parade begins at 2 p.m. on Main Street. It is a long-lasting tradition in Alachua and will feature music, bands, Santa, floats, and much more holiday fun for the whole family.  

Christmas in the Quarry  

Cedar Lakes Woods and Gardens, 4990 NE 180th Ave. in Williston, will host its annual walkthrough light show from 5:30-8 p.m. You can explore the 20-acre botanical garden filled with twinkling lighted pathways, a cookie and cocoa station, a kid’s craft station, and Santa. Tickets are $5-$10.  

Sunday  

Christmas Train  

Kirby Family Farm, 19630 NE 30th St. in Williston, will host its 11th annual Christmas Train experience from 6-10 p.m. The highlight of the evening is a featured 20-minute train ride pulled by one of the farm’s 100-year-old locomotives through thousands and thousands of Christmas lights. Tickets are $10-$20. 

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