Area holiday events upcoming

Holiday events dot the upcoming calendar scheduled for various parts of Platte County. While Weston already held its annual lighting ceremony, Parkville, Kansas City North, Platte City and Riverside all have events planned during the next month, starting with the 22nd annual Christmas on the River slated for Friday, Nov. 21. Parkville’s celebration starts at 6 p.m. with shuttle service set to run from Park University and Platte County Community Center North.

Held in the historic downtown district, Christmas on the River features a children’s Christmas activity village and a Santa House open from 6-8 p.m. There will also be various entertainment options on the main stage, including performances from School of Rock, Gardner-Edgerton (Kan.) High School Dickens Carolers and the Park Hill School District 1,000-voice Choir, and hay rides taking place at English Landing Park.

Fireworks conclude the festivities at 8:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public with food and drinks on sale.

Zona Rosa planned to host its annual Northern Lights Holiday Lighting Ceremony the following night but made a late change due to forecasted rain. Instead, the arrival of Mr. and Mrs. Claus and debut of the large, lighted crowns hung above the street and presentation of the 50-foot Christmas tree at Town Square will wait until Wednesday, Nov. 26.

Platte City’s Holiday Lighting Celebration will also be Wednesday, Nov. 26 — the night before Thanksgiving outside the Platte County Courthouse on Main Street. There will be horse-drawn carriage rides and music from Paxton Singers, the Platte City Middle School Honor Choir (on the courthouse steps), the Platte City Community Band Brass ensemble (corner of Third and Main) and flute ensemble (inside the Ben Ferrel Museum).

The Platte City Area Chamber of Commerce and Platte City Parks and Recreation invite area residents to this free celebration at 5:30 p.m.

The traditional 6 p.m. countdown to turn on the holiday lights will follow along with a holiday greeting from mayor Frank Offutt and Platte County commissioners. Mr. and Mrs. Claus will arrive shortly after the holiday lights go on, and they will proceed to the lobby of the Platte County Government Offices.

Children can visit Santa at that time with personal or professional photo opportunities available.

Dasher, Dancer, Prancer and Vixen accompany the Clauses, and the reindeer can be visited on Third Street, west of the courthouse. Other activities include professional face painting (inside City Hall), balloon art and children’s activities. A mini fire truck and mini train run throughout the evening, providing children with a ride through downtown.

There will be complimentary hot cocoa, cider, coffee, popcorn, cotton candy, caramel apple slices, cookies, trail mix and mini cake pops, and The Pool Hall will be open and serving select menu items. The Platte City Police Department will offer grilled hot dogs, chips and water for free at the event space located at 242 Main St.

The theme for the night is “Sleigh Bells Ring.”

The final city-wide celebration will be at 5:45 p.m., on Thursday, Dec. 4 in the parking lot next to Riverside’s Corner Cafe. Riverside will hold its annual lighting ceremony there with parking available on site or at Riverside City Hall.