Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Faribault celebrates winter & the holidays in a big way this weekend December 6, 2019

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 1:11 PM
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A city of Faribault snowplow decked out in holiday lights for a past Winterfest parade. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


CELEBRATE THE HOLIDAY SEASON and all things winter this weekend during the third annual Winterfest in my southeastern Minnesota community. Unlike last year, when a snowstorm resulted in a postponed Parade of Lights, the weather looks to be ideal for the event, already in to its second day.

I missed Thursday’s kick-off. The granddaughter’s angelic debut in her preschool Christmas program took precedence. But plenty of Winterfest activities continue today through Saturday.


The dining room set for the holidays during the Alexander Faribault House Christmas open house. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo 2017.


Today the Alexander Faribault House, historic home of our town founder, opens to showcase a French-Canadian Christmas from 4 – 7 p.m. and then again on Saturday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. And, at 7:30 p.m. Friday, “Peter Pan” opens at the Paradise Center for the Arts for a weekend run that also continues into next week.


Skaters from a past holiday ice show at Shattuck. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


Saturday brings a day packed with events appealing to a broad range of ages and interests. Shattuck-St. Mary’s School on Faribault’s east side hosts its annual Campus Christmas Walk beginning with a figure skating holiday ice show at noon. Family-geared activities follow at the historic upper campus from 1 – 3 p.m. with cookies and crafts, visits with Santa and horse-drawn sleigh rides.


Musicians perform at a previous Faribault Winter Farmers’ Market. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.



Meanwhile in our historic downtown, the Faribault Winter Farmers’ Market runs from 1 – 4 p.m. at the Paradise Center for the Arts. At the same time, the Faribault Sno Go Club hosts a Vintage Snowmobile Show along Central Avenue.


Artisan gifts like this Christmas ornament are available for purchase at Fleur de Lis Gallery along Central Avenue. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


A block off Central, 10,000 Drops Distillery opens its space to 40-plus local craft vendors for the annual Holiday Craft Market. The downtown business district offers plenty of other home-grown shopping options.


A previous Winterfest ice sculpture. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


While you’re exploring, be sure to check out the ice sculpture by Sakatah Carvers located at the corner of Minnesota State Highway 60/Fourth Street and Central Avenue.


Fireworks from a previous Winterfest. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.


Capping the three days of Winterfest are fireworks at 5:30 p.m. (launched from the American Legion) followed by the Holiday Parade of Lights at about 5:45 p.m. Just a note that taller buildings along Central Avenue can block the view of fireworks. A street dance from 6:30 – 10 p.m. ends Winterfest. Organizers promise heaters spaced around the area to keep dancers warm.

So there you go. Lots to do this weekend in my southeastern Minnesota community.

TELL ME: How are you embracing the holiday season this weekend?

© Copyright 2019 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


12 Responses to “Faribault celebrates winter & the holidays in a big way this weekend”

  1. Love the festivities, lights and of course cookies – ha 🙂 Our town has its annual boat parade on Saturday and then next Saturday is the street parade. Then the best is when the local firefighters bring Santa on their fire truck through the neighbors – a highlight indeed! Happy Weekend – Enjoy.

  2. Brian Says:

    Looks like hometown fun in Faribault, enjoy Audrey. Bless all those behind the scenes people that sacrifice time and talent to make it happen. I’m “Driving Miss Daisy” (my wife) this morning to a big craft show at Grace Church in Eden Prairie. She wasn’t sure she wanted to contend with the crowds until I told her I’d come along. Us small town North Dakota folk are in year two of big city living and appreciate all the opportunities to see and attend different events.
    God bless!

  3. valeriebollinger Says:

    That is a lot of activities to choose from. Enjoy!

  4. Littlesundog Says:

    I’ll be starting sugar cookie production today which will go on for a week. I do over 1K cookies for Forrest’s work group and other people who make life easier and good for us – postal delivery, FedEx and UPS people, trash pickup fella, dental staff, optometrist staff, neighbors and elderly friends, etc. I grew up making homemade gifts for people.

    As for the community, there was a street parade yesterday, and the kickoff for small businesses being open a little later than usual. Our city has light displays all along the boulevard that runs through town. I think the larger surrounding communities have bigger events. It’s nice to see community support for the holiday season.

  5. Jackie Hemmer Says:

    Such great weather for your towns winter fest, so much fun to be had! We had our 1st Christmas party of the season on Friday night with long time friends from Church. On Saturday another group of old friend for our church hopped on a commuter bus and did an annual trip along the river stopping at many towns to shop and eat. There were games on the bus, caroling and good fellowship. Blog is coming.

  6. Your photo of the snowplow reminds of a “truckers parade” where i used to live. The local truckers, logging and otherwise would line their trucks with lights. It was such a fun thing to see. Lovely photos, Audrey.

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