RIVERSIDE – Sponsored by the Riverside Chamber of Commerce, this year’s annual Holiday Stroll will be from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Friday in downtown Riverside.
Visitors can shop, eat and drink at the village’s many local businesses and attend special events that span from downtown to Harlem Avenue. Many local businesses will be offering samples, demonstrations and special deals for Holiday Stroll shoppers.
Attendees can welcome Santa as he arrives to kick off the festivities between 5:30 and 5:45 p.m. for the Christmas Tree lighting in Centennial Park. Attendees should remember to bring their I Got It In Riverside stamp sheet for a chance to win a grand prize package from participating businesses.
Flur, Quincy Street Distillery and Aunt Diana’s Old Fashioned Fudge will be offering samples throughout the evening. Riverside Foods will host its annual Customer Appreciation Night and Higgins Glass Studio will hold its annual open house during the Holiday Stroll.
Families also can catch a horse drawn carriage, magic shows, an ice sculptor creation in progress and more events throughout the evening at various downtown locations.
Mr. D’s Magic Shows will run at 7 and 8 p.m and the Riverside Suzuki Strings will perform at 6 p.m. along with the Riverside School District 96 Choir at Village Hall.
Participants also may head to Riverside Garage, 18 East Ave., for a pony ride and petting zoo, or to Jazi Photo, 38 East Ave., for a photo booth picture with holiday props.
Flur will host three retired pro-football players – Chicago Bears Emery Moorehead and John Janati and Marcus Sullivan of the Buffalo Bills – at 1 Riverside Road. Attendees may also be entered to win a raffle for a 2014 Pro Bowl meet and greet.
Girl Scout Troop 657 will host a scholastic book fair at the Arcade Building, 1 Riverside Road, to raise funds for a public school in Chicago’s Lawndale neighborhood to help the scouts obtain their Silver Award.
If you’re not too tired, ages 21 and older can swing by The Chew Chew at 9 p.m. to catch live music from the Kevin Trudo Band at the Stroll After Party.