From parades to tree lightings, here’s how to celebrate the season in Chatham

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It’s November, which means it’s officially acceptable to start playing Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas is You.”

And as the pumpkins get packaged away and the Christmas wreaths are pulled out, Chatham County residents have a plethora of activities in the area to choose from to get into the holiday spirit and reap all that the season’s festivities have to offer.

From parades and tree lightings to artisan fairs and cooking classes, we’ve compiled this list of events across the county to mark the upcoming holidays. Here’s what you need to know.

Thursday, Nov. 24

• For the first time, the Quiltmaker Café is holding a Pay-What-You-Can Thanksgiving dinner in partnership with the Postal Fish Company and the Travelling Café. It’ll take place from 1 to 3 p.m. The family-style dinner, hosted at the Postal Fish Co. in Pittsboro, will feature Thanksgiving classics and include some vegetarian and gluten-free options. Space is limited to 50 guests, and free registration is available at eventbrite.com/e/thanksgiving-dinner-registration-449706523317, though attendees can also register with a pay-what-you-can donation or make a pay-what-you-can contribution on the day of the event.

Friday, Nov. 25

• Choose and cut a Christmas tree from the Jordan Lake Christmas Tree Farm. Reservations are required to visit the farm during Thanksgiving weekend (Nov. 25-27) and the following weekend (Dec. 3-4), and are needed even if picking up a tree that was previously tagged. The farm in Apex is offering fresh cut N.C. Fraser firs, N.C. white pines, Concolor firs, table-top Fraser firs, fresh wreaths and more. Visitors will also have the chance to check out a Christmas Shop with locally-made and -sourced items, enjoy snacks from a concession stand featuring hot mini donuts, apple cider and hot chocolate, and participate in hayrides. There will also be a bounce house for kids. Check out jordanlakechristmas.com for more details on hours of operations, pricing and how to book a reservation.

Saturday, Nov. 26

• Attend the Bynum Front Porch’s Holiday Bazaar from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Pittsboro for a day featuring local artists, pottery and crafts. Sales benefit educational grants for Chatham County students part of the Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) college readiness system.

• The Pittsboro Business Association is hosting a Small Business Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to support independent businesses in downtown Pittsboro. The day features special sales, refreshments, Shop Small Passports and a raffle, and free gift wrapping will be available at the Pittsboro Welcome Center.

• Piedmont Farm Animal Refuge, an animal sanctuary in Pittsboro, is holding a Day with the Turkeys Tour & Explore. From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., take part in turkey-themed activities, including trivia, a raffle, treat bowls for the sanctuary’s turkeys, and one-time holiday turkey sponsorships. Attendees can also meet more than 100 farm animals and tour the refuge’s grounds. The Refuge offers sliding scale tickets; previously tickets cost $15, but this month are ranging from free to $40 in price.

• The Travelling Café Culinary Studio in Pittsboro is hosting a Flourless Holiday Cake Workshop from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Try making cakes from around the world with desserts safe for those with gluten-free dietary restrictions. Participants can register for a ticket online at eventbrite.com/e/incredible-flourless-holiday-cake-workshop-tickets-444823959437?aff
=ebdssbdestsearch; tickets cost $75 for general admission and $10 for a wine ticket.

Sunday, Nov. 27

• Visit the Inn at Celebrity Dairy’s Holiday Open Barn from 1 to 4 p.m. for the chance to grab photos with goats dressed in holiday attire, enjoy tours of the farm, sample products made on the farm and partake in other activities for kids. The Siler City farm will also have cheeses, fudge, soap, gelato, logo shirts and sweatshirts available for attendees to the holiday open barn. Tickets, which cost $10 each, are available at eventbrite.com/e/holiday-open-barn-tickets-469997253437.

Friday, Dec. 2

• Take the kids out for a Supper with Santa from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Earl B. Fitts Community Center in Siler City. Enjoy a to-go boxed dinner and a holiday craft kit, as well as photo opportunities with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Attendees are required to have a ticket, which can be purchased for $10 for adults and $5 for children online at secure.rec1.com/NC/siler-city-nc/catalog?filter=c2VhcmNoPTIyNDgzODM= or in person at City Hall. The deadline to buy tickets is Nov. 25 or until the event is full, and space is limited.

Saturday, Dec. 3

• The Union Taylors Community Center is holding Chatham’s first Interfaith Holiday Thrift Market from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Taylors Chapel Baptist Church in Sanford. The community center is directly accepting donations at their Bear Creek site through Nov. 30; to schedule a donation drop, call (919)-545-1812. Donations will benefit the community center’s purchase of a new HVAC system. For more details on what the community center is looking for, visit www.oneunitedchatham.com/donate-items.

• The Mosaic at Chatham Park and United Way of Chatham County are partnering for an afternoon with holiday vendors, local artisans, food trucks and a Christmas tree lot. The Holiday Festival, held at Mosaic, will be from 2 to 5 p.m., and attendees will get the chance to meet and snap photos with the Grinch. A number of United Way’s nonprofit partners will also be in attendance, including Chatham County 4-H, Chatham County Council on Aging, Love Chatham, Chatham Literacy, Chatham Trades, West Chatham Food Pantry, CORA Food Pantry and the Boys and Girls Club of Pittsboro.

• Go on a candlelit tour of the decorated Alston House from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in Sanford. The House in the Horseshoe site will be dressed in greenery for the season, and guided tours will focus on Christmas practices, celebrations and traditions from the 18th century. Tickets, which are limited, cost $8 each and tours take place every 15 minutes. Visit eventbrite.com/e/o-blessed-season-candlelight-tours-tickets-449797495417 for tickets.

• St. Julia Catholic Church is hosting the Celebration of Lights, a fundraiser for Chatham Cares Community Pharmacy, from 6:15 to 7:15 p.m. The event will feature live music and a bilingual Christmas message as well as the opportunity to drive through hundreds of luminaries. Admission is free, but luminaries can be bought for $10 each to honor loved ones and all proceeds will be used for prescription drug purchases dispensed to patients at the pharmacy.

• Join Starrlight Mead, a meadery located in the Chatham Beverage District at The Plant in Pittsboro, for its annual Community Solstice Party from 6 to 9 p.m. The celebration includes a raffle, food pantry donation bin, optional bring-and-take pagan present table, drum circle and potluck snacks, in addition to a family-friendly ritual presented by the Triangle Wednesday Kindred.

Sunday, Dec. 4

• From noon to 4 p.m., the town of Pittsboro is holding a First Sunday Artisan Fair, featuring food, crafts and music. The Chatham Historical Museum, as well as shops and restaurants in town, plan to host special events.

Thursday, Dec. 8

• The Siler City Christmas Parade will be held at 7 p.m., with its theme of “Christmas: Past, Present, and Future.” Santa will visit with attendees in the courtyard after the parade. For information, go to ccucc.net.

Friday, Dec. 9

• Chatham Parks and Recreation is marking the holidays with the fourth annual Holiday in the Park celebration from 5 to 8 p.m. This free event at Northwest District Park in Siler City includes a tree lighting ceremony, picture opportunities with Santa, holiday-themed games and crafts, warm drinks and candy canes, caroling performances, letters to Santa and a hayride around the pond. The tree lighting will kick off the event at 5:15 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 10

• Sign your kids up for a Kids Holiday Craft Workshop hosted by the Farm at Piper Hill in Silk Hope from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for a day of reconnecting with nature and participating in arts and crafts. Kids will also get a chance to feed and play with animals, go on a hayride and snack on warm cocoa and cookies by the bonfire. There will be a staged area by the barn to grab a family picture. A waiver must be signed for each family, and the farm asks that children bring a packed lunch. The workshop is limited to those ages 8-12, and costs $75 per participant. The rain date for the event is Dec. 11. Visit farmatpiperhill.wufoo.com/forms/mnvy7fl1etcq5l to register.

Sunday, Dec. 11

Pittsboro’s Holiday Parade, with marching bands, handmade floats, dance teams, horse-drawn wagons and more, takes place from 3 to 4 p.m. The parade will move from east to west along U.S. Hwy. Business 64.

Thursday, Dec. 15

• Shop, dine and see downtown Pittsboro lit by luminaria from 3 to 7 p.m. for the Pittsboro by Luminaria event. Catch performances by strolling Victorian carolers.

Saturday, Dec. 17

• Partake in a Christmas Village Around the Loop in Haywood at 438 Moncure Loop Rd., Moncure. The event, from noon to 4 p.m., includes shopping, a holiday sleigh wagon, Santa Station and Kids Zone, and special food vendors, such as Seven Springs Winery, Vicious Fishes Brewery, Que’s Ribs and Brisket, Favors Desserts and Stephanie’s Philly Steak and Cheese. The celebration is free to attend but interested individuals can register at eventbrite.com/e/christmas-village-around-the-loop-in-haywood-tickets-
459983421797?aff=ebdssbdestsearch or contact Karen Cheek at (919)-770-2089 for more information.

Do you have a holiday event you’d like to add to this list? Send it to Maydha Devarajan at mdevarajan@chathamnr.com.

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