It’s almost time for 27th Grafton Celebrates the Holidays
A crowd gathers to sing at a past Grafton Celebrates the Holidays event. (Photo submitted by the Grafton Recreation Department)
By CHRISTINE GALEONE
It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is next week. But with the unseasonably warm weather we’ve had this month, it’s easy to see how the holiday season could sneak up on people.
Thankfully, the town of Grafton, many of its businesses and many of its organizations are prepared. They’re ready to lend a hand in bringing people together in all kinds of ways.
On Sunday Dec. 4, the Grafton Recreation Department will hold its 27th annual Grafton Celebrates the Holidays event. The event will include a craft and vendor fair from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Grafton Municipal Center gym, festivities at “Frosty Stops” throughout Grafton from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., winter and festive songs by the Grafton Girl Scouts and the RISE (Racial Inclusion and Social Equity)-initiated symbolic lighting of Grafton’s first community Menorah on the Common around 4 p.m. and Santa’s arrival and the lighting of the Common around 4:30.
Several Frosty Stop businesses will offer free food, treats and kids’ activities and giveaways, including chicken noodle soup for adults and a cookie for each child at Bushel N’ Peck, kids’ crafts at Savers Bank, Beatz Dance Studio and Houlden Farm – which will be selling Christmas trees and greenery on the farm – and coloring books, badges and the Masons’ child identification program access for kids and gun locks for adults at the Grafton Police Department. Kids can also participate in many other fun activities like sending a letter to Santa at the Grafton Fire Department and riding the Polar Express trackless train at UniBank.
A few of the local churches will also offer fun and inspirational activities at the event. The Congregational Church of Grafton will offer a Gaga game starting at 2 p.m. and fireside stories from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. The Unitarian Universalist Society will hold a winter faire, have live jazz music and a performance by the UUSGU bell choir. The Baptist Church of Grafton will have soft, soothing Christmas music playing for its visitors, who can tour the church’s large display of global Manger Scenes depicting the Nativity.
At the Frosty Stop for Gaudette Insurance Agency, kids can get free custom-made cookies by the Crafted Cookie. People can also help others by dropping off new toys for Toys for Tots at the agency. They can then enter a raffle.
The Grafton Food Bank is also offering people a way to help others. Its “Sponsor a Family” program provides holiday gifts to children in families that are struggling financially. Individuals, families or community groups that would like to sponsor a family by donating gifts/food baskets to one or more of the families served by the food bank can get more information by emailing the nonprofit at [email protected] or by calling the food bank at 508-277-4535.
People looking for holiday ornaments, décor or gifts can find them in several Grafton shops, including Perreault Nurseries’ gift shop, the Grafton Country Store, Off the Common Antiques and The Saddle Shed. In addition to selling festive soy candles and holiday greenery, Perreault Nurseries, the North Grafton nursery and landscape supply shop sells holiday items featuring angels, birds, gnomes and more. And it’s now offering wreath and boxwood tree decorating workshops. Class price and availability can be found on the nursery’s Facebook page. The Grafton Country Store, the Grafton Common gift shop that sells gifts, jewelry, décor and accessories, among other things, boasts a wide selection of holiday gifts (including many featuring snowmen, reindeer and wildlife), ornaments and décor, and it has already extended its hours for the holiday shopping season. Nearby, Off the Common Antiques, the multi-artisan, multi-vendor shop has also updated its inventory to include many holiday hand-crafted and antique ornaments and décor. Over in South Grafton, The Saddle Shed, which offers a selection of horse equipment, accessories, gifts and tack and has winter wear for horses and their riders, has also been selling new items from the Breyer 2022 Holiday Collection.
On Saturday Nov. 26 – which is Small Business Saturday – in North Grafton, Angel Hair Alpacas will hold its annual open house from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. In addition to fun, educational farm tours and free cookies and cider, there will be pop-up vendors selling things such as fudge, gift items and baked goods. Its own farm shop will be selling knitted garments and yarn.
Elsewhere in North Grafton, Tufts University’s Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine also offered a fun, educational event. It held the 13th Annual Blackstone Valley STEM Conference on Nov. 5. Held with the Blackstone Valley Education Foundation, the conference included a day of educational STEM-based activities for students from area middle schools.
Although the holiday season will be here soon, Grafton and many of its businesses and organizations are ready to help people prepare for it in fun and inspiring ways. Have a happy, healthy Thanksgiving!
Contact Christine with your business news items at [email protected].