Ontonagon’s popular Hometown Christmas fun this weekend

Skip Schulz/For the Daily Mining Gazette The “Welcome to Ontonagon” sign greets visitors and directs them to the business district. This weekend, Ontonagon will host their popular Hometown Christmas celebration, including a parade and many fun activities.

ONTONAGON — The community that is known for its huge Labor Day weekend celebration complete with a parade started a new tradition years ago. That was to have its own Hometown Christmas celebration, concluding with what the small community is known for: a parade.

The weekend festivities start Thursday night with a concert at the Ontonagon Christian Center. The fun heats up on Friday with the youth Christmas dance at the Community Action building from 7-10 p.m. This is for children in grades six through eight and sponsored by Ontonagon County 4H.

Sponsored by Operation Graduation, a dance for high school students will run from 9 p.m.-midnight at the school.

The businesses and residences that registered at the Village Office for the Christmas lighting contest will be judged on Friday night. The registration deadline is 1 p.m. on Thursday and can also be done by one of the Hometown Christmas volunteer coordinators.

The popular Christmas Craft Fair will be on Saturday from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. This is at the high school and sponsored by the Ontonagon County Chamber of Commerce.

Nonesuch Gallery will have a Saturday open house, and people can register to win a $50 gift basket.

Also on Saturday, children accompanied by an adult can participate in games, decorating, crafts and cookies during the Hometown Christmas “Children’s Time” at the Community Action Building from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

From 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Living the UP Dream will have an open house featuring 15 percent savings on in-stock and custom copper creations. This new business in the community is asking customers to fill out a “naughty or nice” Christmas gift card. The Shamrock Reindeer Run will be from 3-5 p.m.

The Ontonagon County Historical Museum open house will be from 5-8 p.m. At 6:30 it will have live entertainment and refreshments.

What has become one of the biggest events every year during the Hometown Christmas celebration in Ontonagon is the Morin fireworks show at the Ontonagon Marina Park. This will begin at 6 p.m.

Hometown tree trimming will be Saturday night from 6:30 to 8:00 between the Fitness Center and Museum. People are asked to bring a shatterproof ornament for the tree. Refreshments will be provided by Aspirus-Ontonagon.

Norm Pestka Construction will once again sponsor horse-drawn hayrides. On-Tran will have tours of residences and businesses lit up in full holiday splendor.

Saturday night will be the annual Snowball Dance at the Eagles Hall from 9 p.m.-1 a.m., with music provided by the Altar Boys.

Sunday’s festivities begin at 10 a.m. with the Cookies By the Pound at the Holy Family Catholic Church.

From 4-5:30 p.m., Forever Flowers and Firefly Boutique will have an open house with prize drawings, refreshments and the gift bags for the first 25 people.

Starting at 5 p.m., both Syl’s and Northwoods Cafe will be offering free hot chocolate and coffee.

The highlight of the weekend is the traditional Hometown Christmas parade on Main Street. Floats, trailers and “4-legged kids” will be lining up at 5 p.m. on Parker Avenue by the former Elementary School.

The parade begins at 5:30 p.m. The parade has open, commercial and youth categories.

After the parade children will be able to visit with Santa at the Fire Hall until 7:30 p.m., when event winners will be announced.