'Host' festival

Fayetteville’s annual street festival, “Host of Christmas Past”, kicks off the holiday season this weekend for the 26th year.

Thousands will descend on downtown Fayetteville to enjoy the Christmas-themed festival, which offers something for everyone, from music, arts and crafts, to festival food, storytelling, a kids’ fun zone, visits with Santa and, of course, shopping.

This year’s “Host of Christmas Past” begins Friday evening, Nov. 9, and continues Saturday, Nov. 10, culminating with the Craft Show at Lincoln County High School and the Alpha Kappa Home Tour Sunday afternoon, Nov. 11. Numerous activities for folks of all ages are on tap.

Those planning to attend are urged to visit hostofchristmaspast.com, and download a brochure to plan their weekend. Brochures may also be picked up at the Chamber of Commerce or Fayetteville Main Street offices. The brochures include maps showing activities in each of several zones around town. Details are also available by calling the Chamber of Commerce at 433-1234 or Fayetteville Main Street at 433-7006.

While downtown Fayetteville is the hub of the festival, the event has become so large that it stretches out the Huntsville Highway south of town.


Friday night


The festival kicks off with the Elgan Brooks Memorial Christmas Tree Lighting at 5 p.m. on the lawn of the Lincoln County Courthouse. The Lincoln County High School chorus will be on hand to add to the festive spirit with the singing of Christmas carols. Strolling carolers and musicians from The Rock Family Worship Center will bring downtown to life as festival-goers shop, eat or visit with friends.

“Three Nightmares”, presented by Carriage House Players, will be staged at the Lincoln County Museum & Civic Center on Friday at 7 p.m. Another performance will be held Saturday at 7 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults, $8 for students. For details, visit www.CarriageHousePlayers.com.

There will be an art signing at Ivy Wreath Florist & Gifts. Handprinted ornaments and pottery will be signed by artist Joanna Caldwell. The signing will also be held on Saturday.

Santa’s Warrior Gift Shop will be open from 5 until 9 p.m. on the second floor of the Fayetteville Municipal Building. The shop will also be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday.

A highlight of this year’s festival is the showing of “The Least of These: A Christmas Story”, the holiday movie filmed in Fayetteville in 2016. According to the film’s Facebook page, some of the actors and production staff will be on hand for the festival. Showings are set for Friday, Nov. 9, at 5:30 p.m. at the Fayetteville Municipal Building auditorium and on Saturday, Nov. 10, at 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium.


Saturday festivities

Saturday’s activities begin with the Seventh Annual Kiwanis Reindeer Run which begins at the FLC Public Library. Registration for the 5K begins at 6:30 a.m., with the race starting at 8 a.m. To preregister, visit runlincolncounty.com.

Musical performances will be held throughout the day at the bandstand on the courthouse lawn. Jean Worley will perform at 8:45 a.m. with the Motlow Brass Ensemble following at 9 a.m.; Simply Fabulous at 9:30 a.m.; Stillwater at 10 a.m.; Backstage Performing Arts at 11 a.m.; Lance Carter at noon; Logan Wheat at 12:30 p.m.; Greg & Ron at 1 p.m.; Madison Community Band at 2 p.m.; Wanda Tate at 3 p.m.; and Triple Play Band at 3:30 p.m.

The Camargo Guards, a Confederate historical reenacting group, will be portraying the life of a Civil War soldier from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the FLC Museum. At 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m., they will also perform a weapons demonstration. Tours of the Museum will be held from 10 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., which coincides with Winter Wonderland also at the museum.

Storytelling with Jerry Mansfield will be held at courthouse with “Tales for the Young and Young At Heart” at noon at “Local History with a Personal Touch” at 1:30 p.m.

Santa’s Warrior Gift Shop will be on the second floor of the Municipal Building from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Admission is free, and proceeds benefit Lincoln County Warrior Project.

“The Least of These: A Christmas Story”, the holiday movie filmed in Fayetteville in 2016, will be shown at 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the Municipal Building.

An art exhibit and sale will be held from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. at the FLC Arts Center with performing artists on stage. Book readings will be held at 12:15 p.m., 1:15 p.m. and 2:15 p.m. at The Book Inn featuring Fran Gray, a member and reader with The Beatrix Potter Society. Book signings will be held 2-4 p.m. by local illustrator Gabrielle Mullins, who will be signing her Fayetteville, Tenn., Coloring Book.

The Handbell Concerts, featuring the Cumberland Presbyterian Church Faith Ringers, will be held at the Municipal Building at 3 p.m. and 4 p.m.

There will be an art signing at Ivy Wreath. Handprinted ornaments and pottery will be signed by artist Joanna Caldwell. Movies at Lincoln Theatre include The Nutcracker and The 4 Realms at a cost of $5.50 per person. Showtimes are 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m.

Photos with Santa Claus by Gloria Stults Photography will be offered from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Professional photo packages will be available, and kids can visit Santa and tell him what they want for Christmas.

A Saturday evening concert at First United Methodist Church begins at 4:30 p.m., with the LCHS Chorus.

The Kids Village this year will feature even more fun for youngsters. There will be a Kidz Zone Fun Bounce from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., and cow train rides from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

REACH, a nonprofit organization that serves individuals and families affected by special needs, will have a booth at Host where ornaments, as well as handmade wooden tops, made by special needs students and individuals from the Skills Development Center will be sold. Funds will assist in REACH in its mission.

A special feature this year is Christmas on the Farm from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. Interact with a live farm animal display and experience activities on a family farm at Christmas time. The event is presented by Fayetteville City, Riverside Christian Academy and LCHS FFA.

Horse-drawn carriage rides will be offered from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Wayfarer’s Rest at St. Mary Magdalene Episcopal Church Parish Hall will offer complimentary light refreshments, rest rooms, diaper changing stations and private nursing rooms. The church will be open for prayer and viewing.

Polar Express Adventure at the FLC Public Library will be held at 11 a.m. Take a magic trip to visit Santa at the North Pole. Warm pajamas and blankets welcome. There will be book reading, games, snacks and photo ops.

The Elves’ Workshop, also at the library, will be held from 12 noon until 2 p.m. There will be free crafts and refreshments for children 12 and under.

The Motlow Brass Ensemble will be playing on the front porch of First Baptist Church at 10 a.m.

Visit Ten Thousand Villages at First Presbyterian Church Family Life Center from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. View the crafts of artisans from around the world. Proceeds benefit artisans from over 30 countries.

The Candlelight Walking Tour begins at First Presbyterian Church at 5 p.m. and continues through 8 p.m. Stroll along historic candlelit streets and listen to music by Madison Community Band. The Cemetery Stroll will be held at First Presbyterian Church Cemetery from 5-8 p.m. See history come alive in Fayetteville’s first cemetery.

 “Three Nightmares”, presented by Carriage House Players, will be held in the museum auditorium at 7 p.m.

The Elk Valley Crafters will host its craft show at LCHS from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Proceeds benefit local non-profits.

A Craft Show & Business Expo will be held at Riverside Christian Academy from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Proceeds benefit RCA. A Live Nativity, Animals & Crafts at RCA will also be held 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. with proceeds benefiting Redeeming Assurance Ministries.

Sunday festivities

Alpha Kappa Home Tours will be held from 1-5 p.m. Featured on this year’s tour are the Carter Home at 402 Third Ave.; Maddox Home, 17 Rambo Rd.; Southerland Home, 129 Scott Orchard Rd., Taft; Wright Home, 934 Shelbyville Hwy.; and St. Mary Magdalene Episcopal     Church, 106 Washington Str. Advance tickets are $15; please call (931) 307-1821 or 931-993-5957 for tickets. Tickets at $20 each may be purchased on the day of the tour at any of the homes. Proceeds benefit the Alpha Kappa College Scholarship Fund.

The Elk Valley Crafters will hold its annual Craft Show at LCHS from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Sunday with proceeds aiding local nonprofits.

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