LEMONT – Downtown Lemont will officially start the season with the Hometown Holiday from 3 to 7:30 p.m. Saturday.
The event has grown since it first started in 1992.
Village of Lemont marketing coordinator Donna Pecina said the first event consisted of a tree lighting, an adopt-a-tree activity and hot chocolate and cookies at the World War II monument.
Pecina said the adopt-a-tree is still one of the most popular parts of the event. Community groups will decorate trees displayed downtown during the holiday season.
"Kids really look forward to doing the decorating of the trees," she said. "It's the first thing that kicks off Christmas. It makes it more real."
The village will have to work quickly to get its own tree ready for the lighting on Saturday.
Pecina said the tree they received on Tuesday was damaged. The village has ordered another tree scheduled to arrive Thursday night or Friday morning.
The Lemont Garden Club decorates the village's tree, so she said she is not worried about it being ready in time.
Pecina said the horse-drawn wagon rides are also a popular attraction each year.
"There is a line for those horse and wagon rides from the minute they come in to when they're leaving," she said.
There are also a couple new features at Hometown Holiday this year.
The Old Quarry Middle School choir will perform at the event. They will sing for an hour leading up to the tree lighting at 5 p.m.
Terri O'Neill-Borders is organizing a bake sale at Aurora Rose, 111 Stephen St., to benefit a family whose son has cerebral palsy. The family needs funding for a wheelchair-accessible van.
Baked goods for the sale can be dropped off at Aurora Rose on Friday or before 3 p.m. Saturday.
Lemont Village Board member Jeanette Virgilio, who is chair of the Downtown Development Committee, said Hometown Holiday is important for the downtown business district.
"It's a way for people to get engaged with the community during the holiday season," she said.
The festivities taking place during the Hometown Holiday include:
• Ice sculpting demonstration, 3 p.m.• Girl scout caroling, 3 to 3:30 p.m.• Horse-drawn wagon rides, starting at 3:30 p.m.• Old Quarry Middle School choir, 4 to 5 p.m.• Tree lighting, 5 p.m.• Visits with Santa at Sweet Water Deli, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Downtown businesses will host other activities and treats throughout the event:
• Face painting and arts and crafts at Nail Inn• Charity bake sale at Aurora Rose Boutique• Girl scouts serving hot chocolate and cookies outside Stonehouse Pub• Hot chocolate at Smokey Row Antiques
If you go
What: Village of Lemont's Hometown HolidayWhen: 3 to 7:30 p.m. SaturdayWhere: Downtown LemontMore information: Visit www.lemont.il.us