With the holiday season in full swing, two Columbia County communities are holding Christmas festivals to celebrate the season.
"We're going to have a blowout Christmas in Appling," North Columbia Fire and Rescue Chief Tom McFarland said of the event, which the department holds each year.
McFarland said the department will be lighting up the park next to the Board of Education building in Appling at about 6 p.m. Saturday. The free event offers hot dogs and hot chocolate and a chance to sit on Santa's lap.
"We're going to make it bigger than it's ever been," McFarland said.
Appling residents are not the only ones planning to celebrate Saturday. The city of Harlem is holding Breakfast with Santa, a by-reservation-only event at BG's Deli and Fine Catering, at 9 and 10 a.m. Harlem also is holding its annual Christmas parade at 11 a.m.
"It looks like there will be a good many (parade entries), at least 50," said Kathy Ham, the city's Industry, Trade and Tourism Department head.
Downtown Harlem shops also will be participating in the third annual Christmas in the Heart of Downtown Harlem. The event, which runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., features shop owners selling their wares at a sidewalk sale and open house, area entertainment and children's rides and games.
Ham said more than 40 vendors have signed on to participate in the craft show, which has been canceled for the past two years.
"We'll have the craft show," Ham said. "We've tried it the last couple of years, but it was either too cold or raining and we never got it together."
For more information on the Harlem festival, call Ham at 556-0401.
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