By: Cayce Lee
Merry Christmas! It’s amazing that 2021 is drawing to a close already. It’s been a rollercoaster year full of events dotting the calendar for the family, such as the Ardmore Car Show, Tennessee Old Time Fiddlers Convention, April Saturday Walks, Haunt Walks, and more
With 2021 came a blooming of nostalgia – remembering our friends and family of yesterday and yester-year. The trips down memory lane have been vast — from remembering your uncle shiny collector car, your grandpa’s cologne as you hug him at the door, your granny’s Thanksgiving table spread with mounds of your favorites to tuck into after grace, your dad’s barrel-deep voice reading tales to you, the wide-eyed awe of your little ones as they wander around the corner to see the tree on Christmas morn, or the over-joyed giddiness of the shiny gifts from the dog-eared pages of the Christmas catalogues.
It’s this waxing nostalgia that brought the theme of “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” to the activities of Athens-Limestone, Alabama, and many of its events including the parades in Athens, Elkmont, and Ardmore. Even if the Athens-Limestone area isn’t your home, Athens-Limestone Tourism would like to invite you to come home for Christmas and experience our Southern hospitality and neighborly comforts of the holiday.
There are plenty of activities to keep you busy and full of the “Spirit of the Season” too. You can find the details for these highlighted events and many more by visiting the Athens-Limestone Tourism website at VisitAthensAL.com.
Christmas Parades… Bring out the marching bands and the Jolly Ol’ Elf himself as high-stepping fun comes to Athens on December 2, Elkmont on December 4, and Ardmore on December 13. Choose from a colorful flotilla of lights at either Joe Wheeler State Park Marina or Riverwalk Marina on the Tennessee River on December 11.
North Pole Stroll in Athens… Wander amid the whimsically-themed trees in Big Spring Memorial Park during the month of December as Athens-Limestone Tourism hosts this annual memory-making event. Be sure to check out the trees of the Optimist Club, NAACP Youth Council, The Family of Hugo “The Bubblegum” Bates, Athens State University, Brody Jackson State Farm, Bank Independent, the Scottish Tree hosted by the Wirth Family and more as night falls over the park and the lights twinkle and dance. If you come and park to see the trees, please turn off your lights so you and those strolling can enjoy the glitter and sparkle of the solar-powered lights.
Tinsel, lights, and bows brighten Ardmore’s Town Hall… Ardmore Tinsel Trail is a brilliant twinkling of trees at the corner of 1st Street and Ardmore Avenue in Ardmore, Alabama, from December 3 through January 1, 2022. Don’t miss the lighting December 3 as they throw the switch for the twinkling lights to come to life. You’ll definitely want to visit Tinsel Trail on December 4 when Santa comes to visit at the Ardmore Town Hall in front of the trail.
Sippin’ and Shoppin’… Bring your Christmas list and enjoy the sips as the annual Sippin’ Cider returns to the Square in downtown Athens. This unique event offers soft and hard ciders to enjoy as shoppers peruse the shops for the perfect Christmas gift on December 11.
Don your ugly Christmas sweater and lace up your shoes… It’s time for annual Christmas tradition hosted by Athens High School JROTC, the Jingle Bell Jog on December 4. Whether you will run or just want to come watch the fun and see who leaves with Best Costume Award, it’s all fun and Jingle Bells!
“Christmas Now And Then”… Calvary EpiCenter returns with their annual presentation of “Christmas Now And Then.” This family-friendly music event set for the Tanner Campus allows the audience to experience the magic of now and the majesty of then. Dates for the show are peppered throughout December.
Explore the true meaning of Christmas… Enjoy the annual Bethlehem Walk with Mable Hill Baptist Church on December 3-5 and 10-12 for an immersive experience that wanders through the streets of old Bethlehem. Pack the family in the car and drive through Emmanuel Baptist Church’s “The Christmas Story” with scenes depicting the true story of Jesus, available December 17-19.
Events are always being added to the calendar at VisitAthensAL.com, so be sure to check often or subscribe to the weekly Athens-Limestone Tourism newsletter and get event updates and more in your inbox.
By: Cayce Lee
Social Media Specialist, Athens-Limestone County Tourism Association