It’s the holiday season, and there is fa-la-la-la-lots to do in Buffalo. So trim the tree, pour the eggnog and get ready for some holiday festivities.
Lighted Christmas parade
If you’re dreaming of a bright Christmas, then Saturday, Dec. 4, is the day for you.
Buffalo’s annual lighted parade down Main Street will be the grand finale of a day packed with holiday spirit.
Sheridan College will host Selfies with Santa from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Bomber Mountain Civic Center.
The event is free, but participants are encouraged to bring a donation of food for the Bread of Life Food Pantry.
Before the parade – from 4:30 to 6 p.m. – the Buffalo Chamber of Commerce and the Beta Sigma Phi Chapter will host a free chili feed in Crazy Woman Square. Local restaurants and merchants will provide hundreds of gallons of chili, while the Buffalo Lions Club will donate hot cocoa and coffee. State Farm Insurance will host a make-your-own s’mores station.
The parade kicks off at 6 p.m. Local businesses and organizations are encouraged to create their most imaginative floats to fit this year’s parade theme of “Holiday in Paradise.”
Following the parade, Buffalo High School FFA will sponsor a fireworks show.
Shop ’til you drop
Parade day will also provide bountiful shopping opportunities for Buffalo residents, starting with the 3-2-1 sales. On Saturday morning, local merchants will offer discounts according to the time you purchase.
St. Luke’s Episcopal Church will hold its annual “Surprise You!” sale in Onderdonk Hall, located across from the movie theater, from 8 to 11 a.m. The sale features homemade baked goods and candy alongside handmade crafts, needlework, Christmas decorations and wreaths.
From 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Learning Tree Christian School will host a holiday shopping expo with local vendors. The event will be held in the Bomber Montain Civic Center; booth proceeds support Learning Tree programs and facilities. A soup and sandwich lunch will be available for purchase.
Buffalo Events is sponsoring a Christmas Market in Crazy Woman Square from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. Saturday. The market will feature European-style Christmas food and drink and vendors.
Give a gift
There are many ways that community members can give back as we head into the most wonderful time of the year.
The Angel Tree program kicked off Nov. 12, with angel tree tags available at DJ’s Grocery and Variety, Lynn’s Superfoods, Buffalo Prescription Shop and Corner Stone Pharmacy. All unwrapped Angel Tree gifts must be brought to the Buffalo Chamber of Commerce by Dec. 3.
The Buffalo Senior Center is collecting stocking stuffers to help make senior citizens’ Christmases merry and bright. Stocking stuffers must be dropped off at the senior center by Dec. 10.
The Veterans Home of Wyoming invites people to sponsor a military veteran this Christmas. Sponsorships are $35 and will provide a veteran with a tote bag filled with goodies. To sponsor a veteran, call Nicholle Larson at 620-5145.
The Buffalo Police Department will, for the 10th year, offer its Operation Blue Santa program. Each year, the department is given names of families in crisis in Buffalo and it works to address the needs of families, ranging from rent assistance to gift cards for local goods and services.
Donations in the form of checks can be made out to BPD Blue Santa and dropped off at the Criminal Justice Center. To coordinate an in-kind donation of services, contact the Buffalo Police Department at [email protected]
Here we come a–caroling
There will be plenty of festive musical opportunities this holiday season.
The Buffalo High School music department will present a winter music concert at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 7. The event will be at the BHS auditorium and is free and open to the public.
The Clear Creek Middle School music department will present two holiday music programs. The middle school bands will perform at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 14. The choirs will perform at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 16. Both events are free and open to the public and will be held in the BHS auditorium.
Just for kids
No kidding – the Kid’s Christmas Shoppe is set to return to the Bomber Mountain Civic Center on Dec. 10 and 11.
Kids age 4 through fourth grade will have a chance to pick out free items that they can give as gifts to their family members. Students will receive “golden tickets” in school that entitle them to “shop” for gifts.
The annual event will again be sponsored by Buffalo High School’s FFA, and attendees are encouraged to bring nonperishable food items as donations.
Remembering loved ones
The Christmas season is the perfect time to remember those we love, and there are several opportunities to do that in Johnson County this year.
Susie Bowling Lawrence Hospice will host its annual Tree of Lights ceremony at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 12, in the Johnson County Healthcare Center cafeteria.
Families can purchase ornaments to honor loved ones, living or dead, whether they are in hospice or not. The names of those honored will be read at the ceremony. Donations to the Tree of Lights ceremony help ensure that future hospice patients and their families receive quality care, regardless of their financial situation. If you wish to purchase an ornament for a loved one, call the hospice at 684-6137 by Dec. 5.
The holidays can be a difficult time for those who have lost loved ones, and the healthcare center is also offering grief support groups at 10 a.m. every Tuesday in the Lake Angeline conference room.
Christmas in Ucross
The Raymond Plank Center in Ucross will be decked out for the holidays at the ninth annual Ucross Community Christmas Celebration on Dec. 11.
Festivities will begin at 4 p.m. and culminate with the lighting of thousands of Christmas tree lights and a fireworks display at 6 p.m. The celebration will include the reading of a new Christmas story by Craig Johnson and a piano performance by Ebenezer Eferobor, an internationally experienced composer who grew up in Lagos, Nigeria. In addition, the Buffalo High School Balladiers will sing Christmas carols. The event will be complete with crafts for children and festive refreshments for all.
Attendees are invited to bring nonperishable food items, which will be distributed to several local food pantries.
The Raymond Plank Creative Center and the Park at Ucross are located at the intersection of U.S. highways 14 and 16 East in Ucross. For more information, visit www.ucross.org or contact 737-2291 or [email protected]
BHS business students creating pop-up shop
Students in the Buffalo High School entrepreneur class will be taking over the Main Street space formerly held by The Office on Saturday to host a single day pop-up shop called “BHS market day.”
At the pop-up shop, students will sell various handcrafted items — such as candles, stickers, hand warmers, jewelry, cookies, car detailing and more — beginning at 9 a.m. on Saturday.
BHS business teacher Kami Kennedy said the class held market day last year at the high school, but this year opted to move the store downtown to better align with the multitude of Christmas events already taking place.
“The gist of market day is a chance for entrepreneur students to put their ideas into action,” Kennedy said. “I always believe in learning by doing, and so I guess that’s a big part of it philosophy-wise and this is a great chance for that.”
Kennedy said the students have been engaged in every part of the process of making market day happen — from creating product ideas to figuring out prices to the design and set-up of store displays.
The BHS market day pop-up shop opens at 9 a.m. Saturday and closes at 6 p.m.
Editor’s note: This post has been updated with the correct dates for the Kids’ Christmas Shoppe.