Brunswick tree-lighting launches holiday season

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BRUNSWICK — A visit from Santa and tree-lighting ceremony Saturday kicked off the holiday season.

The annual Brunswick Downtown Association event, held at the Brunswick Town Mall on Maine Street, offered horse-drawn carriage rides, refreshments and carols before St. Nick – accompanied by Frosty the Snowman – lit the Christmas tree.

The gathering is “such a great community event,” Patti Spencer-Yost, BDA’s marketing and communications coordinator, said Nov. 20 while preparing for the evening. “That just really gives you the feeling of the season.”

After the tree lighting, “people are just hanging out on the Town Mall, chatting and having a really nice time, and enjoying the ambiance of the lights and the warmth of the community. It is that Norman Rockwell feeling.”

Log onto brunswickdowntown.org for a full schedule of December events.

The BDA later on hosts a “Downtown Brunswick Holiday Window Decorating Contest,” judging for which takes place Wednesday to Thursday, Dec. 5-6.

Elsewhere in Brunswick, the Mid Coast Hospital Auxiliary Holiday holds its Holiday Bazaar & Wreath Sale at 123 Medical Center Drive from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 29. The 123 Medical Center Drive event will be held in the hospital’s cafe conference rooms, outside of which wreaths will be available in a tent.

Wreaths, centerpieces, baskets of greens, treasures, decorated country antiques, fudge, baked goods, and cookie plates are among the offerings, and proceeds benefit hospital projects.

Call 373-6020 or visit midcoasthealth.com/auxiliary/holiday-wreath-orders to place an order.

Saturday, Dec. 1, is the day for at least three holiday fairs at churches around town.

St. Paul’s Episcopal Church will hold its 82nd annual Christmas fair from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Treasures and jewelry, fiber arts, wreaths and greenery, Christmas cards and decorations, Advent calendars, baked goods, cutlery, frozen gourmet meals, a silent auction, and a country store are part of the 27 Pleasant St. event.

Lunch, featuring chowder and various soups, runs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

That same day, the Brunswick United Methodist Church hosts its own holiday fair at 320 Church Road from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wreaths, baked goods, handmade crafts, candy, gift cards, hand-knit and hand-sewn gifts, maple syrup, jewelry, preserves, pet gifts, and “Ed’s Famous Haddock Chowder” will be available.

A third fair, at the Unitarian Universalist Church at 1 Middle St., runs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Handmade wreaths and decorations, a “children’s corner zoo” with an assortment of youthful gifts, local crafts, jewelry, and a white elephant table with a variety of items such as CDs, books and kitchenware are among the offerings.

In addition, The Frontier Cafe Cinema & Gallery hosts a holiday craft fair, “MillRun,” from 5-8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 14 and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15. Attendance is free to the 14 Maine St. event, which hosts more than 20 area artisans and craftspeople.

Alex Lear can be reached at 780-9085 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.

Brunswick’s tree lighting drew about 1,500 people on Saturday, Nov. 24.Callen Sutton, 5, right and his sister, Haley Sutton, 8, center, of Brunswick, play with snowballs while waiting to see Santa at the Brunswick Downtown Association’s tree-lighting event Saturday, Nov. 24.

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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.