the buzz

Snow to fly for Carefree Christmas Festival this weekend

By Curtis Riggs | December 10, 2008

Dec. 12 – 14 along Easy Street

CAREFREE – The weekend forecast calls for snow flurries, a few Santa sightings and an old-fashioned Christmas along Easy Street and in the Town Center.

The inaugural Carefree Christmas Festival will be held in downtown Carefree from Friday Dec. 12 through Sunday, Dec. 14. Large Disney snow machines, strolling carolers, Christmas lights and decorations and oodles of Christmas cheer will set the tone for the festive holiday weekend. The highlight will be a Parade of Lights that will deliver both Santa and Cinderella to Santa’s Grotto (Town Center Amphitheater) where they will greet the children, many of whom likely have never seen real snow. The transformation of the amphitheater into a winter wonderland will be courtesy of large snow machines.

Festival co-organizer Jo Gemmill said there will be many activities designed to create a festival atmosphere and instill the spirit of Christmas.

“There will be many entertainers to help people feel Christmasy and forget their troubles for a few days,” she said.

The parade, which will be held on Easy Street at 6 p.m. Gemmill asks people to get there early so they will have a place to park. Cars will not be allowed to park on Easy Street after 3 p.m. on Friday. Side streets to Easy Street will be closed at 5:30 p.m.

Shuttles to Easy Street will run from the Carefree Studios at the northwest corner of Tom Darlington and Cave Creek Road. Parking is also available at the Basha’s parking lot and the business parking lot at Sunshine Place.

Illusionist Jacob Spivey will present his “Magic of the Mind” show at Los Portales Mall at 8 p.m. on Friday.

The Kiwanis Club of Carefree will be taking pictures of children on Santa’s lap at Santa’s Grotto throughout the weekend.

Greyhound and pet adoptions will be taking place at Los Portales Mall beginning on Saturday morning. The Festival of Trees, which benefits area non-profit groups, will be held at Los Portales Mall Saturday and Sunday.

The play “Coyote Dreams – A VERY Arizona Christmas” will be held at Los Portales at 7 p.m. on Saturday.

Excerpts from the ballet, The Nutcracker, will be held in the Town Center Amphitheater beginning at 1 p.m. on Sunday.

“This event could not have been made possible without the generosity of the volunteers and sponsors who committed to make this such an event-filled holiday festival,” Gemmill said.

“The purpose of the festival is to bring joy to members of our community during the holiday season. We encourage everyone to visit Carefree and experience the magic of Christmas this season.”