NEW CANAAN, Conn. -- New Canaan is ready to kick off the holiday season this weekend with the 10th annual Chamber of Commerce Holiday Stroll.
The two-day event will feature shopping deals, entertainment, activities, holiday characters, food, toy drives and more.
The Holiday Stroll begins Friday at 10 a.m. with downtown stores offering sales and merchandise.
On Friday evening, the town will commemorate the event with a lighting of outdoor trees, performances by the New Canaan Dance Academy, the Performing Arts Conservatory, Magical Music Mini Singers, Students of the Studio, Magical Music for Life Singers and appearances by Santa and Mrs. Claus. Rudolph, Frosty and the Grinch will also be strolling the downtown area Friday evening, greeting shoppers.
"We're transforming the downtown into a Dickens storybook," said Tucker Murphy of the Chamber of Commerce, who will be one of the Masters of Ceremonies for the Friday evening festivities, along with First Selectman Rob Mallozzi.
One of the goals of the event is to encourage people to shop local and support New Canaan businesses, Murphy said. But the main goal is to bring the community together to celebrate the holiday season.
"Downtown New Canaan is quintessentially New England. This event helps get everyone in the spirit of the season and ready to shop local. We want the whole community to be able to come together and enjoy the holidays."
The festivities will continue Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Parking fees will be waived Saturday, so no tickets will be issued to cars in legal spaces.
Shoppers can check out more than 100 gingerbread houses that will be on display throughout town, kids can get their pictures taken with Santa, and there will be artists working and more performances. Three ice sculptures will be on display sponsored by Callari Auto Group, who will also be collecting toys for the Norwalk-based Breakthrough Options for Families.
Murphy said the dedication of the Chamber should pay off with a fun weekend for the whole family.
"I'm excited. We've been working on this since July and we want everyone to come out and enjoy this very special weekend."
Click here to see a full schedule of Holiday Stroll events this weekend.
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