Christmas in Peninsula offers merry time in village
By Stephanie Kist
PENINSULA — Peninsula Village will be a merry place this holiday season. Christmas in Peninsula begins tomorrow, Nov. 23, and will continue Dec. 1-2, 8-9, 15-16 and 22-23.
Among the many highlights around town, Santa Claus, Santa’s elves, Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and other holiday characters will visit various locations, including: Yellow Creek Trading Co., Nov. 24 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.; The Log Cabin Gallery, Nov. 24 and Dec. 15 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Dec. 8 from 1 to 2 p.m. and Dec. 16 and 23 from 2 to 3 p.m.; Blue Heron Bookstore for “Stories With Santa,” Dec. 8 from noon to 1 p.m.; and Winking Lizard for “Lunch With Santa,” Dec. 16 from noon to 3 p.m. [for reservations, call (330) 657-2770].
Santa also has been known to hang out at the GAR Hall. Call (330) 657-2633 for details.
A holiday family tradition continues at Heritage Farms, which sells cut-your-own and fresh-cut Christmas trees. Trees are shaken, baled and loaded for the trip home, and horse-drawn wagon rides and hot chocolate also are available. Christmas season hours start the day after Thanksgiving and are Mondays through Thursdays from noon to 7 p.m. and Fridays through Sundays from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. The fields are open until dark.
A new addition to Heritage Farms is the Crooked River Herb Farm Shop, which recently moved. Gift baskets are available featuring local and Ohio products. Shipping is available. Holiday hours beginning Nov. 29 will be Thursdays from noon to 7 p.m. and Fridays through Sundays from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Other village shops and establishments will offer special goods and hours throughout Christmas in Peninsula.
The Downtown Emporium’s gift selection features vintage Christmas ornaments and jewelry, including Christmas pins. Homemade snickerdoodles are offered on the weekends. The shop is open Wednesdays through Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Beginning Nov. 23, Elements Gallery will be open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. offering gifts of pottery, Christmas plates, wood, leather, glass, photography, paintings and more. Dec. 8 is the deadline for custom orders to be delivered by Dec. 25.
At Yellow Creek Trading Co., party food ideas will be offered from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Ohio folk painter and muralist Becky Smith will visit Dec. 1 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. On Dec. 8 from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., the shop will offer a discount on customers’ entire purchases. On Dec. 15 from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., customers will receive a free ornament with a $10 purchase. And on Dec. 22 from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., customers can sign up for a drawing for a $100 gift certificate with any purchase.
Visitors can meet the artists and select from an array of hand-crafted items created by the 20 artists at The Log Cabin Gallery’s White Satin Winter Exhibit on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Many shops and restaurants will offer gift certificates, and gift memberships to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park Association also are available.
A free shuttle bus will be provided with six stops throughout the village on Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 22 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. A map of the route and the stops is available at Downtown Emporium.
Free gift wrapping will be offered Dec. 8, 15 and 22 from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at GAR Hall.
Musical offerings during Christmas in Peninsula will include Suzanne Wojcik and Michael Burley presenting a Holiday Drumming Circle around the campfire (weather permitting) Nov. 24 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at The Log Cabin Gallery. Donations will be accepted for the AIDS Task Force.
Christmas carols will be sung throughout the village by the Woodridge Freshman Choir Dec. 1 beginning at 12:30 p.m. Then, that evening from 5 to 7 p.m., Bud Preston, solo finger-style guitarist, will perform at The Log Cabin Gallery from 5 to 7 p.m., and Al Petteway and Amy White will perform at 8 p.m. at Happy Days Visitor Center.
Also at Happy Days, the Grada: Irish Christmas Special will be presented Dec. 13-14 at 7:30 p.m. Advance tickets are available by calling (330) 657-2909.
For children, there will be holiday stories every Saturday in December at noon in the Heron’s Nest at The Blue Heron Bookstore. Children age 5 and older also can make decorations and crafts Dec. 8 from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the Peninsula Library. Call (330) 657-2665 to register.
The library also offers holiday movies on Saturdays and Sundays Nov. 24 through Dec. 23 at 1 p.m., and the library and historical society will have the second annual Holiday Mini Tree Display up Nov. 24 through Dec. 17. Raffle tickets will be sold for a tree of choice.
Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad’s special events include the Christmas Tree Adventure Train Dec. 1-2 and 8-9. The train departs from Rockside Station in Independence at 10:15 a.m. Mr. Jingeling’s Holiday Express will be offered Saturdays and Sundays through Dec. 16.
For reservations, which are required, and additional details, visit www.cvsr.com or call (800) 468-4070.
For complete Christmas in Peninsula details, visit www. explorepeninsula.com and follow the link.
Crooked River Herb Farm’s Turbo the Christmas llama and owner Kathleen Varga greet visitors at a past Christmas in Peninsula. Photo: Diane Seskes