Scene from Winterfest 2014. Courtesy photo
A magical family event, the annual “Winterfest” will bring the sights, sounds and experiences of the Christmas season alive with a three-day holiday celebration Dec. 4-6.
Anyone who’s ever wondered what it’s like to conduct an orchestra will get a chance to try their hand at the Los Alamos Symphony Orchestra Holiday Concert at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 4 at the Crossroads Bible Church. Led by conductor Don Gerheart, the orchestra will play the strings as they pull at the heart strings of listeners, who are invited to sing along to holiday music. A raffle drawing will determine who gets to experience what it feels like to be a conductor. There is no charge for the concert, but donations are gladly accepted.
Also at 7 p.m. at Duane Smith Auditorium, Dance Arts Los Alamos will perform the classic holiday ballet “Nutcracker on the Hill”. Performances also take place at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 5 and Sunday, Dec. 6. Tickets are $15 for adults; $10 for ages 4-17 and seniors 60 years and up. Visit danceartslosalamos.org for more information.
Also Friday, Dec. 2 is the annual Creche Show displaying hundreds of beautiful nativity scenes from around the world 2-7:30 p.m. at the Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, at 1967 18th St. The show continues 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Dec. 5. There is no charge.
Saturday, Dec. 5, start the day with a complimentary Breakfast with Santa, organized by the Kiwanis Club, 7-11 a.m. at the Betty Ehart Senior Center, 1101 Bathtub Row. From there, children (K-6) can shop for Christmas gifts while parents enjoy holiday treats at the 11th annual Children’s Bazaar at the Trinity on the Hill Episcopal Church, 3900 Trinity Dr. Donated items will be available for purchase, ranging from jewelry to books to kitchen items priced between 50 cents and $5. No entry fee.
Children of all ages can experience the warmth of the holidays 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Fuller Lodge Open House. The Los Alamos Family Council will provide an all-day cookie walk and live holiday music and sing-alongs. Performances by the NM Dance Theatre will take place at various times throughout the day as well.
Visit losalamosmainstreet.com/events/winterfest/ for the schedule. The Fuller Lodge Art Center will give visitors a chance to purchase handmade one of a kind gifts at the Affordable Arts Show, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Fuller Lodge Art Center, 2132 Central Ave.
Meanwhile, Mesa Public Library will have arts and crafts activities and read holiday themed stories 10 a.m. to noon Saturday.
Also Saturday, the Los Alamos Geological Society will host its free annual Earth Treasure Show, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Masonic Temple, 15 Canyon Road. Geode lovers and rock hounds can buy stone jewelry, gems, related books and more for the holidays. Kids’ activities, crafts, food court, silent auction and exhibits along with mineral ID also will be available.
Children will be able to share their wish lists and take photos with Santa at the “Kids Talk with Santa” 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at CB FOX, 1735 Central Ave.
Saturday evening, all are invited to participate in lighting up downtown Los Alamos, beginning at 5 p.m., with the Lighting of the Holiday Tree with members of the County Council at the Los Alamos County Municipal Building. Complimentary cookies, cocoa and a holiday photo booth will let visitors warm up before heading to Central Avenue for the “El Niño Holiday Lights Parade.” Space is still available to enter the parade. Watch beginning at 6 p.m. as floats decorated with Christmas lights glide by between 4th Street and Canyon Road.
Then, at 7 p.m., join in the countdown to the lighting of the trees around Ashley Pond, just steps from Bathtub Row where the Manhattan Project scientists once walked.
Sunday, Dec. 6, Winterfest will wind down with an opportunity for furry members of the family to get photos taken with Santa at Pet Pangaea, at 158 Central Park Square.
One of the brightest events of Winterfest is the North Pole Workshop and Luminaria Walk at the Posse Lodge and Stables, 650 North Mesa Road. Visitors can enjoy complimentary hayrides on the property, lined with farolitos and luminarias. There is no charge for the event.
For complete information including a schedule of events and lodging information, visit losalamosmainstreet.com/events/winterfest/.