Santa Claus is coming to town
November 16, 2016
Niwot’s 16th annual Enchanted Evening event on Friday, Nov. 25 will kick off this year’s season of light with plenty of fan favorites and a few added enticements. Promising a night of nostalgia, the event gathers together the old and the young for the singing of traditional yuletide songs, a tree lighting ceremony, a visit with a certain red-suited northerner, and a chance to check off some of the “naughty or nice” people on this year’s holiday shopping list.
While hammers are busy pounding up at the North Pole, shops along Second Avenue and in Cottonwood Square are readying for the holidays by lining their windows with garland and evergreen. For the second year in a row, revelers at Enchanted Evening are invited to visit participating shops with a passport, and when it’s filled up, cast a vote for their favorite window. Painted Primrose owner and event founder, Sarah Cioni, said this year’s prizes for the contest are “bigger and better than ever before.”
A drawing will be held for contest participants, with the first prize winner receiving a free night at the Niwot Inn. The second prize winner will receive one pizza every month for an entire year from Niwot’s Abo’s Pizza, and the third prize is a locally inspired gift basket.
The Niwot Community Semi-Marching Free Grange Band will begin the night by limbering up the crowd’s vocal chords, playing seasonal favorites starting at 5:45 p.m. in the parking lot at the corner of Niwot Road and Second Avenue. Abo’s Pizza elves will be on hand to serve hot chocolate with marshmallows, keeping everyone warm as they wait for the man of the hour.
Santa is expected to arrive on horse and sleigh at 6:15 p.m. to address the crowd, to be followed by the tree lighting ceremony. Then he’ll be making his way, Pied-Piper style, to the Left Hand Grange Hall, where he and his lap will be available for holiday wishes, questions about the proper care and feeding of reindeer, concerns about global warming and its effect on the weather at the North Pole, etcetera, etcetera.
Banjo Billy’s bus will once again ferry celebrants back and forth from Old Town to Cottonwood Square, where riders can answer questions about Colorado trivia while warming their feet and meeting new friends.
Ice sculpture demonstrations are a new feature this year for the festivities at Cottonwood Square. Look for the carvings to emerge in front of HMK Jewelers, where two four-foot blocks of ice will slowly unveil Olaf (the snowman from “Frozen”), along with a surprise. Participants can also look forward to the stylings of Dr. Banjo, Niwot’s own Pete Wernick, at the Winot Coffee Company again this year.
Treats and seasonal beverages will be available at participating Old Town shops as well, such as mulled wine at Little Bird, and “grandma’s cookies” and punch at Wise Buys Antiques.
If participants are still thirsty, there’ll be plenty of frosty beer and ale on tap at Powder Keg and Bootstrap breweries. Or if Jack Frost is nipping at your nose, try Niwot Tavern’s Caramel Appletini or the Mountain Mule signature cocktail at 1914 House. Other seasonal delights include Colterra’s Fall Harvest cocktail and Treppeda’s refreshing “Cello” Martini.
This year’s holiday parade is co-sponsored by Niwot High School’s Key Club and the Niwot Business Association, which begins at 11:30 a.m. on the morning following Enchanted Evening, Saturday, Nov. 26.