|Gering’s holiday season has begun|
|November 29, 2012 Jerry Purvis|
Photo by Elizabeth Gross/Gering Citizen Having arrived at his village in the Gering Civic Center parking lot on Friday during the Gering Merchants’ Vintage Christmas Parade, Santa met with many admirers, such as young Roman Turney, of Morrill. Spirits were joyful as legions of children told Santa what they wanted for Christmas, promising that they’d been very good all year.
Gering Merchants officially kicked off the Christmas season last Friday evening with the seventh annual Christmas parade and the opening of Santa’s Village.
“It was another fabulous parade,” said event co-chair Gloria Gibbs. “We had a lot of attendance and I think everyone enjoyed it.”
The parade had 10 registered floats, but other vehicles such as the county sheriff and local fire departments also took part. Members of the Gering Police Department also had their patrol bikes decorated in Christmas lights for the event.
Prior to the 6 p.m. parade through downtown, entrants gathered in Gardner Park for judging. The first place float was Valley Bank and Valley Insurance. Second place went to Gering Valley Plumbing and Platte Valley Companies came in third.
“The weather was perfect for a parade,” said Donna Cozad of the Gering Merchants. “It wasn’t that miserable cold we’ve had in past years.”
The last float in the parade is always Santa, on his way to the opening of Santa’s Village at the Gering Civic Center. About 300 people attended the opening as children visited with the jolly elf and shared their wish lists for Christmas.
Santa’s Village will be open on Saturdays from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. through Dec. 22. And don’t forget that Santa will bring his reindeer to Santa’s Village on Dec. 1
The big attendance day for the community will be Dec. 1 as all the Gering museums have an open house to “Celebrate an Old-Fashioned Christmas.”
The Scotts Bluff National Monument celebrates “Christmas on the Prairie” from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Children will be able to make decorations and sing carols to the live music of The Village Players. Refreshments are provided and a number of activities common in the 1800s are planned as well.
A “High Plains Christmas” takes place from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the Farm And Ranch Museum. Attendees can ride in a horse drawn hay wagon, toast marshmallows, enjoy their famous bean soup for lunch, send letters to Santa via Pony Express Rider and listen to live music featuring local church choirs.
The North Platte Valley Museum is also hosting the opening of its “Trees Along the Trail” event from 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. as several local non-profit organizations decorate Christmas trees for display. The public is also invited to vote for their favorite. Votes are $1 and the funds help support the local agencies and the museum. Refreshments and prize money are courtesy of H&R Block.
Also on Dec. 1, the Chimney Rock National Historic Site south of Bayard will host its “Christmas on the Prairie” event from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. There will be refreshments and children can make their own decorations and Christmas cards.