Events kick off Christmas season


Staff reports



The Lima Symphony Orchestra will be in concert Saturday, under the direction of new Music Director Andrew Crust. “Lyrical Exuberance” was pre-recorded.

The Lima Symphony Orchestra will be in concert Saturday, under the direction of new Music Director Andrew Crust. “Lyrical Exuberance” was pre-recorded.


Courtesy of Lima Symphony Orchestra

Santa and Mrs. Claus ride atop an antique fire truck in a past Bluffton Blaze of Lights parade.

Santa and Mrs. Claus ride atop an antique fire truck in a past Bluffton Blaze of Lights parade.


File photo | The Lima News

It’s officially time to get in the Christmas spirit.

• Mercy Health Bright Nights opening night is 5 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 28, at the Allen County Fairgrounds, Lima. The drive-thru Christmas light display will be throughout the fairgrounds and will feature a light tunnel. Cost is $10 per carload.

The display takes about 20 minutes to drive through. A radio station will be available for visitors to tune in and listen to the “The Nutcracker” from the Lima Symphony Orchestra while they drive.

The event will continue most Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through Jan. 3. A full schedule and tickets can be found at https://j.mp/3kSRxfl.

• The 48th annual Christmas Tree Festival at the Allen County Museum has been canceled due to the pandemic. However, the committee will focus on decorating the gazebo in the Children’s Garden with a tree and lights, which can be viewed by driving through the parking lot. The display will be illuminated beginning Wednesday, Dec. 2, and continue through the month.

Sponsors include Church Woman United and Johnny Appleseed Metro Park District.

• Santa Claus will be available at the Lima Mall in the Old Navy concourse. He plans to stop by beginning Friday, Nov. 27, through Dec. 24. Hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sundays.

Children will engage in a socially distanced conversation and pose for a photo with Santa. Advance registration is encouraged online at j.mp/3nC7E2G, but walk-up visits will be permitted as space allows.

Virtual experiences are also available, with details online at j.mp/2IT7x40.

• The 10th annual Holiday Lights Display at the Armstrong Air & Space Museum begins tonight, Nov. 27. The museum will be open from 6 to 8 p.m. for the kick off. The grounds of the museum will be decorated, and the event is a drive-thru this year. Masks and social distancing are required at the kick-event, and opening night visitors are asked to park in the RV lot.

Prominent displays include a 20-foot tall Saturn V rocket and an Apollo-era astronaut saluting the American flag. The lights will be illuminated from dusk until dawn daily until the end of the year.

Donations will be accepted in person and online.

• Bluffton’s Blaze of Lights is in its 34th year, and a few things are being added to the traditional offerings of the Ream folk art collection. The display will be illuminated Nov. 28 to Jan. 1 at Bluffton Presbyterian Church, 112 N. Main St.

New events scheduled for Dec. 5 include Santa’s Caravan, a light-viewing parade led by Santa in a fire truck, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Register to decorate your vehicle at blufftonchamber@gmail.com. Later that day at 8 p.m., a free drive-in movie will be offered at Bluffton Family Recreation, 215 Snider Road. “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” from 2000 will be screened. Registration is required at bfrc@wcoil.com. Also that day, a Town Crier presentation by Kevin Gratz including the Christmas story and a performance by the Bluffton High School Show Choir will be shared on Facebook and YouTube.

• The 28th annual Welcome Santa Christmas Parade will be from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 29, at Ottawa Memorial Park.

The parade will be a drive-thru event. The floats themselves will be parked and parade-goers will move through. Participants should use the 11th Street entrance and exiting to the right at the corner of Parklane Drive and North Pratt Street.

Santa will be at the end of the parade, and children are encouraged to bring their letters for him that will be collected.

• The opening concert of the Lima Symphony Orchestra’s season will begin at 6 p.m. Nov. 28 at Van-Del Drive-In, 19986 Lincoln Highway, Middle Point. Streaming is also available for this concert for those who want to participate at home. Visit https://j.mp/2KwwAdU.

“Lyrical Exuberance” was pre-recorded and will introduce new Music Director Andrew Crust. The concert will feature piano soloist Awadagin Pratt.

Programs are available online.

Tickets are $20. Visit limasymphony.com for details.

The Lima Symphony Orchestra will be in concert Saturday, under the direction of new Music Director Andrew Crust. “Lyrical Exuberance” was pre-recorded.
https://www.limaohio.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/54/2020/11/web1_Crust_TONED.jpgThe Lima Symphony Orchestra will be in concert Saturday, under the direction of new Music Director Andrew Crust. “Lyrical Exuberance” was pre-recorded. Courtesy of Lima Symphony Orchestra
Santa and Mrs. Claus ride atop an antique fire truck in a past Bluffton Blaze of Lights parade.
https://www.limaohio.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/54/2020/11/web1_BLUFFTON-LIGHTS-1-TONED.jpgSanta and Mrs. Claus ride atop an antique fire truck in a past Bluffton Blaze of Lights parade. File photo | The Lima News

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