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Kick off the season with Holiday in the Grove

Daylong event features crafts, shopping, music, parade.

NEWS-TIMES/HILLSBORO TRIBUNE FILE PHOTO - Santa will be in Forest Grove Saturday, Dec. 3 for photo ops during the Holiday in the Grove festivities.Holiday cheer has swept over the city of Forest Grove for nearly 15 years in the form of Holiday in the Grove.

The magical event, put on by the City Club of Forest Grove and the town’s merchants, will feature a plethora of fun, family-friendly activities on Saturday, Dec. 3 that make for a great kickstart to the end of the year.

“Holiday in the Grove has a wide variety of things, some aspects are low-key,” said Mary Jo, Morelli, a City Club board member and co-chair of the event. “We go around and ask stores in town if they’ll host crafting activities for kids, or art-to-go.”

Some stores in town, like A Framer’s Touch, 1920 21st Ave., don’t have enough space to host a crafting party — instead, they’ll create small crafting care packages in plastic bags and hand them out as the day rolls along.

Valley Art, 2022 Main St., has a more open space, so the gallery will be hold an elf workshop where eventgoers can stop in and sit down to work on art designs.

The day kicks off at Kama’aina, 1910 Main St., with a special breakfast with Santa from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. If locals don’t get the chance to dig into some ono (delicious) eats with Santa, they can catch him at the Forest Grove Fire Department for a cheerful photo opportunity near the antique pumper truck.

NEWS-TIMES/HILLSBORO TRIBUNE FILE PHOTO - An Artisan Market will be held at the Community Auditorium for a warm, dry location for holiday shopping. Haven’t started holiday shopping yet? No worries, the Community Auditorium , 1915 Main St , will hold an Artisan Market that’ll feature a ton of cool knickknacks like local art, ornaments,and more. According to Morelli, it’s a great way to shop locally and knock out that Christmas list.

Though not every spot in town features arts and crafts for the kids, some will have great seasonal offerings for adults. Urban Decanter, 2030 Main St., and Ridgewalker Brewing, 1921 21st Ave., will have some special holiday-themed drinks for those that need to get their palates refreshed.

For those who can't get enough Christmas music, students from Forest Grove High School will be caroling around town. Pacific University will also be hosting a Holiday Concert at 7:30 p.m. in Taylor-Meade Auditorium — tickets are $7, $5 for seniors, and Pacific staff, faculty, students, and any youth with student ID can enter for free.

Every year, the most popular part of the day occurs at dusk, when the bustling Main Street downtown prepares for the Holiday Light Parade at 5 p.m. The parade will feature dazzling, decorated floats from different business and organizations across town. This specific part of the evening draws in hundreds every year, so those wanting to see some holiday wonders will have to get there early to secure a good view.

“This thing is bigger than the City Club. We work with everyone in town to put this on,” said Morelli. “I love seeing everyone’s enthusiasm in such a small and historic town — it’s absolutely wonderful and joyful.”