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Luverne hosts Winterfest this weekend

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news Worthington, 56187
Worthington Minnesota 300 11th Street / P.O. Box 639 56187

LUVERNE -- It may not look a whole lot like Christmas without a good coating of snow on the ground, but if you head over to Luverne this weekend, an array of festivities are sure to get you in the holiday spirit.

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Luverne's annual Winterfest celebration marks its 13th year, with activities planned Friday through Sunday in the community.

Jane Wildung-Lanphere, director of the Luverne Area Chamber of Commerce, said numerous local businesses and organizations have combined efforts to provide fun for the entire family this Christmas season.

Activities get under way on Friday, with Monroe Crossing rousing up the Christmas spirit with their Holiday Concert at the Historic Palace Theatre in downtown Luverne. Tickets will be available at the door for the performance.

New this year, and open from Friday through Sunday, is No Room at the Inn, displaying a collection of nativity sets from around the world in the Tuscan Room, which is located on Luverne's Main Street, next door to The Coffey Haus. Free-will donations will be collected for Habitat for Humanity.

The largest-ever craft show in the history of Winterfest will begin Saturday morning at the Luverne Elementary School. The show is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and includes more than 90 vendors this year.

"We probably worked together the hardest and the longest (on organizing the craft show)," said Lanphere. "We are sold out for the first time in a number of years, with 20-plus new vendors."

Also on Saturday, Santa's Workshop will keep your children in Kindergarten through fourth grade occupied from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Elementary Commons, with a visit by Santa from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Another new activity, Christmas at the Movies, will fill the rooms of the Rock County Veterans Memorial Building. Lanphere said a collection of holiday movies will be playing on four flat-screen televisions. People may enjoy the movies, and bring their own popcorn if they wish. Among the movies to be played are The Bishop's Wife, It's a Wonderful Life, Christmas in Connecticut, A Christmas Carol, The Shop around the Corner, It Happened on Fifth Avenue, Miracle on 34th Street, Going My Way and Holiday Inn.

The main event of Winterfest in Luverne is the Lighted Winterfest Parade, which gets under way at 7 p.m. Saturday on Luverne's Main Street. With nearly 20 entries already signed up for the event, Lanphere said all of the floats will be lighted for the holiday season.

"It should be a nice parade," she said. "People are working on floats and they have very clever ideas."

The parade starts at the Palace Theatre and continues down Main Street to Blue Mound Avenue, and then two blocks north to Luverne Street to travel by the Hospice Cottage.

Lanphere said parking will be allowed on Main Street during the parade this year so spectators who wish to stay in their vehicles may do so. Streets will be blocked off during the parade and reopen once it is finished.

Following the parade Saturday, and attain at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, is the American Reformed Youth presentation of Angel at McDonalds inside the Palace Theatre. The production includes numerous musical selections, and is open to the public for a free-will donation.

Throughout the three days of Winterfest activities, the Carnegie Cultural Center will be open to showcase this year's Festival of Trees. More than 20 trees have been decorated for display at the center, and people are encouraged to walk through the display and vote for their favorite of the Christmas trees.

Following is a complete schedule of events:

Friday:

No Room at the Inn, Tuscan Room on Main Street.

Buffalo Feeding, Blue Mounds State Park.

Festival of Trees, Carnegie Cultural Center.

Wine Tasting, Blue Mound Liquor, Luverne.

Dollar Swim, Luverne Aquatic & Fitness Center.

Story hour puppet show, 10:30 a.m., at the Luverne Public Library.

Cribbage Tournament, 6:30 p.m., Luverne Eagles.

D-Light-Full 5K run, 6:30 p.m., Luverne Aquatic & Fitness Center.

Monroe Crossing Holiday Concert, 7:30 p.m., Historic Palace Theatre. Tickets available at the door.

Saturday:

No Room at the Inn, Tuscan Room on Main Street.

Buffalo Feeding, Blue Mounds State Park.

Festival of Trees, Carnegie Cultural Center.

Wine Tasting, Blue Mound Liquor, Luverne.

Dollar Swim, Luverne Aquatic & Fitness Center.

Winterfest Craft Show, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Luverne Elementary School.

Santa's Workshop, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Elementary Commons.

Pictures with Santa, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Elementary Commons.

Christmas at the Movies, 1 to 5 p.m., Rock County Veterans Memorial Building.

Cup of Christmas Tea, 2 to 4 p.m., Hinkly House.

Dollar Skate, 5:30 to 8 p.m., Blue Mound Ice Arena.

Steak Fry, 6 to 9 p.m., Luverne Eagles.

Lighted Winterfest Parade, 7 p.m., downtown Luverne.

Angel at McDonalds production, following the parade, Palace Theatre.

Sunday:

No Room at the Inn, Tuscan Room on Main Street.

Buffalo Feeding, Blue Mounds State Park.

Dollar Swim, Luverne Aquatic & Fitness Center.

Christmas at the Movies, noon to 5 p.m., Rock County Veterans Memorial Building.

We'll Skate, You Donate, 4:30 p.m., Blue Mound Ice Arena.

Angel at McDonalds, 7:30 p.m., Historic Palace Theatre.

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