A weekend of Christmas-themed events is coming to Celebration Plaza for the fifth year in a row.
The square will be filled with thousands of colorful lights, attractions, music and Christmas spirit. After months of planning, Sulphur Springs City Council, Lions Club, Downtown Business Alliance, Chamber of Commerce and organizations around the community have pitched in to create a weekend to be remembered.
“I think this weekend is something that people look forward to as a kickoff to the holiday season,” said Department of Tourism Director Joey Baker.
The evening begins Friday at 5:30 p.m. with the annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony. As the square lights up with a myriad of colorful lights, Christmas Market on the Plaza will open with food vendors and holiday shopping opportunities. Holiday carolers will also be strolling around the plaza, spreading Christmas delight with their vocal talents.
As the celebration kicks off, local business Sister Babyz is presenting its Christmas Fashion Show, followed by local dance organizations performing a holiday-themed show on the main stage. Popular children’s favorites, the snow tiger exhibit, 100-foot snow slide and bounce houses will also open after the tree lighting ceremony. Both the bounce houses and slide have height restrictions for children. The tiger exhibit will have a $1 dollar entrance fee to see the animals with additional opportunities to feed them and take photos.
This will be a special year for the tiger exhibit. Two years ago, baby tiger cubs were brought around Sulphur Springs Independent School District for students to pet and learn about tigers. Those tigers are now fully grown and will be on the square Friday night. A horse drawn buggy will also be available for rides around downtown.
Then at 7 p.m., the annual Lions Club Christmas lights parade will begin in Buford Park. The parade will travel down Connally Street toward the plaza then turn on Jefferson Street. The parade of lights will then circle a section of the square and turn down Church Street to Houston Street before heading back to Buford Park.
On Saturday evening, North East Texas Choral Society will present “Once Upon a Christmas” at 7 p.m. and again on Sunday at 2 p.m. at Hopkins County Regional Civic Center. Tickets are $10 in advance for adults and $5 for children or $12 dollars at the door with a special $25 dollar family price. For $25, the family package includes two adult tickets and four children tickets.
“If you have never seen 100 voices singing together, you do know know what you are missing,” said NETCS Music Director Carol Allen. “It will be an enchanting and magical experience.”