WITH FRESH SNOW LAYERING the ground, festive lights brightening streets and storefront windows, and an evening of holiday activities underway, it was feeling a lot like Christmas in downtown Faribault on Thursday.
Randy and I joined in the kick-off of the second annual Winterfest by popping into the Paradise Center for the Arts,
pausing on the corner of Central Avenue and Fourth Street to watch ice sculpting and listen to Due North carolers;
and then simply strolling along the sidewalks viewing storefront displays. I wish, though, that all of the downtown businesses had been open and we’d had more time.
It was a beautiful and balmy—for Minnesota anyway—evening to enjoy the holiday spirit and the company of friends we met while out and about. That’s one of the things I love about living in Faribault—seeing people I know like Kelly from the Chamber and Faribault Main Street (event organizers), Julie at the Paradise, young and enthusiastic entrepreneur Jess at Fleur de Lis, friends Billie Jo and Neal and family…
A genuine warmth and sense of community exist in Faribault, a place I’ve called home for 36 years. I feel comfortable here, welcomed, appreciated and valued for who I am as a person and a professional. When I attend an event like Winterfest, I see, too, the appreciation others hold for this town, the incredible talent here and a caring spirit.
This weekend presents a perfect opportunity to experience Faribault as Winterfest continues into tomorrow. Evening fireworks preceding a 5:30 p.m. Parade of Lights and a street dance afterwards cap the three-day celebration.
And just to make Winterfest even more wintry, Faribault and other regions of southern Minnesota are under a winter storm watch from Saturday morning through Sunday morning with up to a possible seven inches of snow predicted. That storm could begin with freezing rain, making travel challenging. So if you’re planning a trip to Faribault on Saturday, check the updated forecast and road conditions as this storm continues to evolve. The National Weather Service currently advises: Travel could be very difficult, especially along Interstate 90 and along Interstate 35 between the Twin Cities and the Iowa border.
Have a great weekend, no matter where you are and what you do to embrace the holiday spirit.
Here’s a list of some activities happening in Faribault on Saturday:
- Peace Lutheran Church Craft and Bake Sale and Luncheon, 8:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.
- A French-Canadian Christmas at the Alexander Faribault house, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. (and also Friday evening)
- First English Lutheran Church Advent Bake Sale and Luncheon, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.; arrive early to buy the coveted homemade lefse (limited quantities)
- Paradise Center for the Arts Holly Days sale, noon – 5 p.m.
- Faribault Winter Farmers Market at the Paradise Center for the Arts, 1-4 p.m.
- Faribault Sno-Go Club’s Vintage Snowmobile Show, 1-4 p.m. along Central Avenue
- The Village Family Theater offers music and refreshments, 4-5 p.m.
- Winterfest fireworks, right before the 5:30 p.m. Parade of Lights
- Winterfest Street Dance, 6:30-10 p.m.
- Mick Sterling’s At Christmas, 7:30 p.m., Paradise Center for the Arts
- SHOP LOCAL throughout the day.
And on Sunday…The Paradise Children’s Theatre presents “The Nutcracker Prince” at 2 and 4 p.m.
© Copyright 2018 Audrey Kletscher Helbling