Holiday Happenings

‘Light Up La Grange’
moves to Saturday to aid families

Organizers hope the move
will encourage more people to come

LA GRANGE, Ky. (December 2015) – The annual Light Up La Grange celebration has something for young and old alike – you only have to “believe” and you will be transported into a fairy tale world where Santa does exist and presents flow freely. Each year, the event promises more music, more lights and more cheer for everyone.
Light Up La Grange will be as festive as ever, but a few changes have been made to this year’s event lineup. The 2015 Light Up La Grange will be held from 3-8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5, in downtown La Grange. In previous years, it had always been held on the first Friday in December.
The switch to Saturday was made and the time lengthened, because “for the last few years, it was harder to get people into town on a Friday night with less daylight hours,” said Karen Eldridge, executive director for La Grange Crossroads District, the entity behind this event. People had to rush to get home from work, get their kids who may have had other activities on a school night, and make it back into town by 6 p.m.
Beginning the festivities two hours earlier on a Saturday afternoon provides more daylight hours for families to get out and enjoy the event, Eldridge said.
“We wanted to make it more conducive for people to get out and about.”
The three main lighting locations include the Oldham County Courthouse Square, Main Street and the La Grange Railroad Museum. Santa and Mrs. Claus will join the Grinch for opening ceremony remarks by La Grange Mayor Joe Davenport on the Courthouse Square. At precisely 5 p.m., the switch will be flipped to light up the downtown area for the holidays.
“Santa will be on the Courthouse Square greeting boys and girls,” said Donna Sabo, chairperson for Light Up La Grange. He will be handing out tickets to the La Grange Polar Express.
Entertainment will take place at three locations during Light Up La Grange: Walnut Street, the Courthouse steps and Courthouse Square Gazebo. School groups and several local church groups will provide musical performances.
Last year, new features were added to enhance the family oriented nature of the event. La Grange was visited by the Polar Express and a synthetic ice rink was constructed on Second Street.
Attendees received a special surprise visit last year from Elsa and Anna, two of the characters from the Walt Disney film, “Frozen.” Sabo said she hopes to “have simple surprises like that again.” Local businesses and restaurants will have extended hours for the evening, and strolling carolers can be found all around town.
The Polar Express will once again be stationed at the La Grange Railroad Museum, 421 E. Main St. There will be lighted trains, displays, Express Tours, a Train Exhibit and hot cocoa for all to enjoy. Sabo said she hopes to be able to ask for donations for the museum, which is still in the start-up stage.
For some attendees, this will be the first time their children will experience Light Up La Grange. “It’s a whole day the family can spend together. There will be a lot going on,” said Sabo.
A free activity the whole family can enjoy will be candy cane making by Just Be Claus at CityPlace, 112 S. First St. This event, sponsored by PNC Bank, will be held by Zane Baze and his family, who love to share their candymaking tradition with others. “We make it from scratch,” said Baze, who has made candy canes for the last 25 years.
It is a process that involves several different steps and “we will make four different batches,” Baze said. For anyone wanting to try his hand at making candy canes, times will be from 3:45-4 p.m. and from 6-7 p.m.
Also taking place during Light Up La Grange will be several author signings at Karen’s Book Barn, 127 E. Main St. Authors scheduled to appear include Nancy Stearns Theiss from 3-5 p.m. and Rachel Rawlings from 4-8 p.m. Theiss, who serves as executive director of the Oldham County History Center, will be signing copies of her latest book, “Rob Morris: A Place in the Lodge.”
This book is about the prominent former resident of La Grange and important figure in Masonic history. She has also written the book, “Oldham County: Life at the River’s Edge.”
Rawlings is a local teacher known for her romance and mystery books. She has written a trilogy, the Grave Reminder series, which includes “Dearly Departed,” “Dearly Remembered” and “Dearly Beloved.” Another of her popular books is “A Parrot Told Me,” a story about a parrot who witnesses a murder.

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