Kirby Farm Christmas Train ride in Williston, FL

The Kirby Farm Christmas Train ride in Williston is a popular holiday attraction in North Central Florida. 

If you’re looking for something to do after—or in lieu of—Black Friday shopping, here are 10 area events going on Thanksgiving weekend to check out (in order by day/time):

Kirby Family Farm Christmas Train

All aboard on the 10th annual Kirby Family Farm Christmas Train. Gates open at 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 26-27, with the last ride starting at 9 p.m. The train will run throughout December (check the dates online) and tickets are limited, so it’s best to register online or call (352-812-7435) to reserve your tickets as the rides sell out on certain nights.

The 20-minute ride takes passengers around the Kirby Family Farm’s Christmas-light display. The event, hosted by volunteers, helps fund outreach programs for at-risk, foster, medically needy, and special needs children.

Kirby Family Farm is located at 19650 NE 30th St. in Williston. 

Chomp The Block official block party

The Florida Gators host Florida State Saturday in their final football game of the regular season and Celebration Pointe will host its regular Chomp The Block pre-game party from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday. Enjoy the festivities, UF celebrity appearances, kids activities and live music from Prime Time and Little Mike and the Tornadoes.

Celebration Pointe is located at 4949 Celebration Pointe Ave. in Gainesville. 

Gainesville Community Playhouse “Oliver!” play

The Gainesville Community Playhouse opened its doors for its latest production, “Oliver!” last Friday, and the play will be performing at 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and at 2 p.m. on Sunday. The Tony and Olivier Award-winning show is one of the few musicals to win an Academy Award for Best Picture and is based on the Charles Dickens novel.

Vam York Theater is located at 4039 NW 16th Blvd. in Gainesville. 

15h Annual Ozello Arts, Crafts and Blue Crab Festival

The Ozello Civic Association will hold its free 15th Annual Ozello Arts, Crafts and Blue Crab Festival at 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. More than 50 artists and crafters will be present along with food and local music from DJ Clarke Moore.

The event raises funds for local charities along with adopting a family in need each year.

The OCA Building is located at 14095 W. Ozello Trail in Crystal River off State Route 19. 

Annual Cane Boil

The Morningside Nature Center hosts the annual Cane Boil from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday.

The free event features age-old traditions celebrating the fall harvest that include a cane kettle with boiling syrup, demonstrations of historic skills, playing games, and a plein air drawing. There will also be guided nature walks, southern food and old-time Americana music playing.

Morningside Nature Center is located at 3540 E. University Ave. in Gainesville. 

Holiday Market at the AUK Market

You can shop the holiday outdoor AUK Market from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. The Holiday Market will feature more than 25 vendors, guest food trucks with coffee from Curia on the Drag and drinks from Dad’s Bar.

The AUK Market is located at 2031 NW 6th St. in Gainesville. 

Sweet Sounds of Jamaica Music Festival

Rum 138 presents its inaugural Sweet Sounds of Jamaica Music Festival at 4 p.m. on Saturday.

Join The New Rulers, The Dub Collectors, Undercover Rasta, & El Vocero for a musical explosion of Reggae, Dub, Ska, Rocksteady and Soul—all near the Beautiful Santa Fe River.

Rum 138 is located at 2070 SW County Road 138 in Fort White. 

Mott-May Gallery’s Winter Art Show and Reception

The Mott-May Gallery will host its Winter Art Show and Reception from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday. The event will include a variety of art and live music, along with JEMsOriginals located next door featuring tie-dye, potter and other crafts. 

The gallery is located at 214 NE Cholokka Blvd. in Micanopy.

Light Up Tioga

The Tioga Town Center will be hosting its annual Light Up Tioga tree lighting and holiday festival with Alachua County USMCR Toys For Tots from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday. The free event includes live music, food trucks, vendors, games, train and pony rides, arts and crafts, and a special visit from Santa. Bring a new unwrapped toy to Lang Jewelers for the Toys For Tots drive.

The Tioga Town Center is located at 13085 SW 1st Lane. 

Bill Rogers Featuring Cynthia Allen concert

A. Quinn Jones Museum and Cultural Center presents an evening of smooth jazz, rhythm and blues and neo soul with Bill Rogers featuring Cynthia Allen at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday.

The A. Quinn Jones Museum and Cultural Center is located at 1013 NW 7th Ave. in Gainesville. 

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