Bath events celebrate an 'Old Fashioned Christmas'

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BATH — The City of Ships becomes the City of Sleighs this month for another “Old Fashioned Christmas.”

Events began Nov. 30 with a tree lighting at Library Park, and the next few Fridays – Dec. 6, 13 and 20 – will feature trolley Christmas caroling from 5-9 p.m. People can warm up with a blanket and hot chocolate, and ride the trolley through the city streets. Passengers are picked up at City Hall every half hour.

A downtown open house will be held from 5-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 13. Holiday music, unique gifts and refreshments will greet patrons of shops and restaurants.

Running that day through Sunday, Dec. 22, is a window and storefront holiday decorating contest. Votes will go into a drawing for a gift basket from Bath’s downtown businesses. Red ballot boxes are available at Brackett’s Market, downtown banks and businesses, and at Hallett’s Clock.

Winners will be announced at “Sing! It’s Christmas!,” the city’s annual community caroling party, at the Chocolate Church Arts Center on Dec. 23.

Throughout the month, new and unwrapped gifts or toys can be donated in the lobbies of the Bath Area Family YMCA, Bath City Hall and Patten Free Library. Non-perishable foods for the city’s food bank can also be stuffed in the bags.

Letters to Santa or holiday cards for seniors can also be dropped in red boxes around downtown throughout this month.

The ringing of the Paul Revere Bell at City Hall wraps things up on Dec. 31. The end of 2013 will be celebrated from noon to 1 p.m., with songs and a brief ceremony, with the bell-ringing and refreshments inside the building to follow.

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Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.