Full weekend planned in Minden

By Bonnie Culverhouse

Planners for Christmas in Minden have really gone out of their way to make this weekend one to remember.

Greater Minden Chamber of Commerce CEO Stephanie Barnette said there are more things to do on Rudolph’s Holly Jolly Christmas list than ever before.

The weekend kicks off with a tree lighting ceremony at 5:30 p.m. Friday, December 16. There will be a hayride tour of the historic district Friday, as well as the Rehab Reindeer Run 5K.

All other downtown events, which are listed below, will take place Saturday, December 17.

“One thing that is different this year is the Reindeer Games – the kids area,” Barnette said. “We are trying to make it more exciting and fun for the kids.”

She said there will be carnival rides, rock climbing wall, pirate ship, mind winder, as well as interactive inflatable games and pony rides.

“For a $20 wristband, you will have unlimited access to all of those things,” Barnette said. “All that will take place in the parking lot between Habacu’s and the Minden Civic Center.”

Another new event is a vendor market on Pearl Street.

“We are closing Pearl Street and will have a craft market set up there,” Barnette said. “We have 15 artisan vendors ready to show off and sell their wares.”

Also on Pearl Street, is an event at the Dorcheat Historical Association Museum.

“We are making no-sew Christmas ornaments,” said museum executive director Schelley Francis. “We supply the fabric and supplies while you supply your artistic talents… we will show you how!”

 Francis said participants who would like to supply their own fabric and items to give their ornament a special touch “… just give us a call and we can tell you what is best to use. This is a great way to use baby clothes, old shirts from a loved one etc.”

From now until December 17, ornament makers will enjoy Christmas music, movies, and holiday refreshments at the museum. 

“Come any time of day while we are open – 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. and 2 until 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday,” Francis said. “Plus we have added from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, December 17 to our calendar in conjunction with happenings around Minden.”

Barnette said Gibsland Bank & Trust is presenting sponsor of this year’s Christmas in Minden. Organizations that have been meeting for months to plan the event include the chamber, Webster Parish Tourism, Minden Main Street, City of Minden, Dorcheat Historical Museum and Webster Parish Libraries.

Barnette said Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Minden is sponsoring the parade. Wednesday, December 14 is the deadline to be a parade participant.

“Right now, we have more than 45 entries,” Barnette said. “The parade takes place at 4 p.m. Saturday, and KASO is going to live stream it.”

St. Jude patient Cole Benson is this year’s parade Grand Marshal.

“Cole has a float and all local former and current St. Jude patients are invited to ride on it with him,” Barnette said. 

Parade judging will take place in front of the civic center and awards presented at 5:30 p.m, followed by fireworks at 6 p.m. in the parking lot beside Webster Parish Courthouse. Barnette said rain is not in the forecast, but if inclement weather takes place, the parade will be held at 4 p.m. Sunday.

Fireworks are sponsored by Home Federal Bank, Habacu’s Mexican Restaurant, Perryman’s Welding and Fibrebond Corporation.

Reindeer Games sponsors include b1 Bank, Interstate Building Materials, Living Word Worship Center, David Raines Community Health Center and Town & Country Health & Rehab.

Full schedule of events:

Friday

5:30 p.m. Tree Lighting Ceremony, Minden Civic Center.

6 until 9 p.m. Holiday Trail of Lights Hayride. Minden Courthouse (free).

6 p.m. Rehab Reindeer 5K Run.

Saturday

9 a.m. until 1 p.m. Festive Christmas Brunch, Geaux Fresh.

9 until 11 a.m. Brunch at Habacu’s

10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Hot Chocolate and Coffee, The Broken Bean.

10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Keepsake ornament making for adults at Dorcheat Museum. Christmas movies and refreshments.

10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Reindeer Games Children’s Area downtown Minden. Bounce houses, pony rides and more.

10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Presents on Pearl (street). Arts and crafts vendors.

11 a.m. until 2 p.m. Photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus at Logan McConathy State Farm Agency.

Noon until 3 p.m. Kids ornament crafting at City Art Works (Free).

Noon until 3 p.m. Kids Face Painting & Smores at The Courtyard (Free).

1 until 2 p.m. Storytime, music and games with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Webster Parish Library Stewart Center (Free).

2 until 4 p.m. photos with Rudolph and Friends, Jacqueline Park.

4 p.m. Christmas Parade, downtown Minden.

5:30 p.m. Parade awards at Minden Civic Center.

6 p.m. Fireworks Show.

6:30 p.m. Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer Movie in Miller Quarters Park. Bring a quilt or chair. No charge.


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