New fun joins ongoing traditions next Saturday as Holiday Madness returns in Pine City.
The Holiday Madness parade starts at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 7, but events kick off in the morning with shopping opportunities and more.
Pine City Area Chamber of Commerce Director Becky Schueller noted that because Thanksgiving is falling so late in the calendar this year, Holiday Madness is as well.
“Our tradition here in Pine City has always been to do our holiday celebration the week after Thanksgiving, and so this year that has fallen on the first Saturday in December,” Schueller said. “We’re really hoping for good weather.”
Boutique, cookie and craft shopping at area churches and the American Legion starts bright and early.
“We don’t coordinate the craft and vendor events that are happening, but we’re really pleased to partner with the groups that do host them,” Schueller said.
The Chili Cookoff starts at 4:30 p.m. in Robinson Park, and there will be hot cocoa and other treats as the day turns into evening.
“We are excited – we’re adding something new this year,”Schueller said. “We’re going to have a S’mores Station. We’ve had our campfires every year, and this year we’re working with Chris’ Food Center ... so you can enjoy a melty, marshmallowy treat while you’re out.”
The parade starts at 5: 30 p.m. on Dec. 7. It will begin at Pine Technical and Community College, head north up Main Street and end by circling around Robinson Park.
“It’s a lot of fun to see that enthusiasm and excitement from kids that are involved,” Schueller said. “The Pine City High School Choir will lead the parade again. That’s truly one of my favorite parts of Holiday Madness is just listening to those kids sing. We’re really grateful to the students and Jennifer Krinke for putting that together for us.
“We just want to encourage people to go out and shop local, support local,” Schueller said. “In our community shopping local can be difficult because there are not a lot of retail options, but shopping local can also be going out and supporting the restaurants and purchasing gift certificates for Christmas gifts. So there are lots and lots of ways to support our local businesses.”