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Activity-filled weekend to conclude with parade

Courtesy of Skip Schulz Ontonagon’s 20th Annual Hometown Christmas Parade will be Sunday. Parade starts at 5:30 pm.

Ontonagon has become a community of parades.

The small Western UP blue-collar community draws thousands of people from all over the world every Labor Day weekend. It was 20 years ago that a small group of volunteers got together to start the Ontonagon Hometown Christmas Weekend.

It’s only appropriate that a weekend full of activities conclude with a parade.

The family-oriented weekend kicked off with the Ontonagon Theatre of Performing Arts Christmas Concert, a Youth Christmas Dance and the Midnight High School Dance for those from ninth to 12th grade.

One of the most popular events for the past 20 years has been the Ontonagon Chamber of Commerce Christmas Craft Fair, scheduled from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. today at the high school. From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. today, kids are invited to decorate cookies and play games at Holy Family Catholic Church. The annual Reindeer (Poker) Run is set for the adults.

Also on Saturday, Ontonagon merchants are hosting a special five-hour sale to help you with your Christmas shopping. The community is well-known for all its unique gift shops. With the help of the Christmas elves, they will even gift wrap your one-of-a-kind gifts…for free.

From 6:30 to 8 tonight, it’s an old-fashioned Hometown Tree Trimming. Norm Pestka will be providing hayrides and On Tran will take people all around the village to look at the holiday decorations. From 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., the Eagles Club will host the Snowball Dance, even those with two left feet are encouraged to attend.

All this will culminate with the Hometown Christmas Parade on Sunday. Parade entrants will be judged in different categories, and the winners of the holiday decorations will be announced. Parade lineup starts at 5 p.m. on Parker Avenue. Spectators can expect to see the parade starting at 5:30 on River Street in Ontonagon’s downtown district.

Oh…or is it, Ho, Ho, Ho…during the parade, a special radar will be facing to the North. Every year, radar detects something, or someone, flying from the North and landing at the Ontonagon Airport. Whomever it is winds up at the Ontonagon Fire Hall in search of good boys and girls.

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