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Holiday festivities kick off in Crawford

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Photo by Tamie Meck Crawford's annual Parade of Lights will be held the Friday after Thanksgiving. This is the only holiday parade of lights in the North Fork Valley. Crawford's fourth annual Festival of Trees and Fruitland Mesa Club Craft Fair also opens

The Christmas season gets underway this week in Crawford with a full slate of events, including the ever popular Festival of Trees and the Parade of Lights.

The Pioneer Days committee is again organizing the events. While the community can expect the traditional activities they've enjoyed over the years, a couple of changes have been made and new events were added, said committee members Tristan Pfeffer and Lynne Watkins.

The fourth annual Festival of Trees runs throughout the week of Nov. 25-Dec. 2 in the Town Hall Community Room. At 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, the live Festival of Trees auction begins. Select trees will be sold by silent auction only, with bids being accepted throughout the week. Also on Friday, a door prize of a fully-decorated tree, donated by the Crawford Pioneer Days committee, will be drawn (winners must be present to claim the prize).

The Fruitland Mesa Club will also host its annual Crawford Crafts Fair from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 25, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 26. A large selection of vendors will offer a variety of holiday and other items. Proceeds help the Fruitland Mesa Club support local organizations throughout the coming year, including the Crawford Public Library, Volunteer Fire Department and North Fork Ambulance.

As it has for more than 13 years, the Parade of Lights begins at 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 25 at the Crawford United Methodist Church. The parade travels down Highway 92 toward Town Hall. A portion of the highway will be closed for the parade (alternate routes through town will be posted). This is the only holiday parade of lights held in the North Fork area, said Pfeffer. Everyone is invited to throw some lights on their vehicles and ride along. Parade-watchers should dress for cooler weather.

Before heading to the parade, swing by the Methodist Church at 5 p.m. for the annual Chili and Nacho Dinner. Cookies made by church members will be sold by the pound. This is a good time to stock up on homemade cookies for the holidays.

Following the parade, warm up at Town Hall while you visit the crafts fair and Festival of Trees.

In the past, kids activities have been held throughout the week. This year, Tuesday afternoon has been designated Kids Play Day. From 3:30-5:30 p.m., children can enjoy hot holiday drinks, make Christmas ornaments and sing Christmas carols. Mrs. Claus will read stories to the children, and, said organizers, "You never know who might drop by."

Two new events geared toward adults will add some variety to the week, said Pfeffer. From noon to 2 p.m. Monday, Nov. 28, a Festive High Noon Ladies Tea will be served in the Town Hall Community Room. The event includes a light lunch and offers an opportunity for the ladies to dress up for the holidays. Tickets are $6 and are available at Crawford State Bank and Wild Country Keepsakes. While tickets are available at the door, advanced purchase is greatly appreciated, said Pfeffer.

On Wednesday, Nov. 30, enjoy the Wine, Chocolate & Cheese Night Out from 6-8 p.m. at the Old Mad Dog Cafe. This 21-and-older event features wines from Leroux Creek Vineyards and Alfred Eames Cellars, specialty cheeses and delectable chocolate treats. Tickets are $15 per person in advance at Wild Country Keepsakes and Crawford State Bank, and $20 at the door.

The annual Community Potluck Dinner happens from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, at Town Hall. Please bring a covered dish to share. Crawford duo David and Tamara Hauze will provide musical entertainment.

A full schedule can be found online at crawfordpioneerdays.weebly.com.

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North Fork
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