Region ready for holiday activities

ROUND LAKE -- After the turkey has been eaten and the Black Friday shopping complete, a couple of communities in the region will ring in the sounds and sights of the season -- the Christmas and ice fishing season, that is -- this weekend.

Live Nativity Tour
The Live Nativity tour at the Sioux Valley Lutheran School Saturday and Sunday features costumed Biblical characters and live animals. The event also includes Christmas music, a soup supper and bake sale.

ROUND LAKE -- After the turkey has been eaten and the Black Friday shopping complete, a couple of communities in the region will ring in the sounds and sights of the season -- the Christmas and ice fishing season, that is -- this weekend.

In Round Lake, organizers are looking forward to a bigger and better second annual Winterfest celebration on Saturday. Festivities include food, a fish house parade, tailgating, more food, door prizes and a dance.

The fun begins at noon, with the Round Lake Legion serving brats and chips until 2:30 p.m. Then, it's time to line up along Main Street for the annual fish house parade.

Lexi Wood, one of the event organizers, said they are expecting about 30 fish houses -- ranging from the odd-looking shack to the castle on ice -- to parade through downtown. More fish houses are always welcome, she said. There is no pre-registration to take part -- fisherpeople are simply asked to bring their ice house to the parade lineup area on Sixth Avenue at 1:30 p.m.

Wood said fish houses are coming from throughout the area, including Lakefield, Jackson, Windom, Fulda and Ocheyedan, Iowa. Quite a few will be displayed by the ice fishing fanatics of Round Lake.


Once the parade is complete, the fish houses will be parked near the Round Lake American Legion for a tailgate party. Visitors are invited to catch a glimpse (not a fish) inside, and vote for their favorite entry. Many of the fish house owners will serve snacks and beverages from their little bungalows.

A chili fee begins at 5 p.m. in the American Legion, and the band Starfire will perform from 8 p.m. to midnight. Throughout the evening there will be $2,000 worth of door prizes awarded, a silent auction fundraiser for Winterfest and a couple of raffle items including a quilt with photos from last year's Winterfest fish house parade, and an underwater fish camera.

"Everybody has a chance to win something," said Wood.

There is no cover charge for the band, and those who bring fish houses are welcome to camp in them overnight on Railroad Avenue behind the Legion, as the street will be closed off during the celebration.

Live Nativity tour

From 4 to 7 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday, the Sioux Valley Lutheran High School will be transformed into an indoor-outdoor live Nativity and narrated tour titled "The Promise of Salvation Revealed." The school is located 10 miles east of Round Lake at the intersection of Jackson County 4 and 9.

The ninth annual live Nativity features an approximately 25-minute narrated tour that shares with visitors the story and promises of Jesus' birth and salvation, according to Rev. Marv Soulek. There are costumed Biblical characters, music, messages, food and live animals -- including camels, a donkey, sheep and goats.

All are welcome to attend the event, said Soulek, adding that a free-will offering will be taken to support the elementary Lutheran education at Fulda, Lakefield and Spencer, Iowa.


As guests arrive, they are encouraged to register before being taken on a guided tour of indoor displays, followed by an outdoor tour and soup supper inside the school gymnasium.

"We have a cast of approximately 40 people, and that includes costumed characters from Old and New Testament scenes," said Soulek.

The tour begins with the Garden of Eden and takes visitors through scenes with Abraham, Jacob, King David, Isaiah, Micah and the angels. Outside, guests will see portrayals of Mary, Joseph, Jesus and the three Wise Men.

Following the tour, guests are invited into the gymnasium for a chili and soup supper, along with coffee and hot cider. A bake sale will also be taking place in the gym.

Live musical groups will perform each evening, with the Lutheran Brass Group performing from 4:30 to 7 p.m. on Saturday; the Jubilant Singers from Immanuel Lutheran of Lakefield singing from 4:30 to 6 p.m. on Sunday and the Worthington Brass performing from 6 to 7 p.m. Sunday. Interspersed throughout the performances will be sing-a-longs.

Optimists Toy Show

The Worthington Optimists are hosting their annual toy show from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday inside the gymnasium at the Worthington Middle School, 1401 Crailsheim Road. Visitors are asked to use the north entrance and park in the north parking lot.

Larry Ailts, event organizer, said 16 vendors are coming to this year's show, including three or four new arrivals. They will have everything from ERTL farm toys and NASCAR collectibles to Beanie Babies, cards and other items.


The toy show typically draws about 600 to 700 visitors each year from throughout the region. Children under 10 get in free with a paid adult admission.

"The weather looks good for the weekend," said Ailts, encouraging people to stop out and shop from the vendors. Those filling booths at this year's show hail from as far away as Watertown, S.D., Turtle Lake, Wis., and Des Moines, Iowa, with numerous vendors from throughout Minnesota.

"Some of these guys deal in newer stuff and some deal in the older stuff," said Ailts, adding that some vendors are looking to buy or trade items as well.

Julie Buntjer became editor of The Globe in July 2021, after working as a beat reporter at the Worthington newspaper since December 2003. She has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism from South Dakota State University.
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