Harney County’s Holiday Happenings
by Samantha White
This year, Harney Countians won’t have to go far for a holly-jolly holiday season, as an array of events have been planned to add some “fa-la-la-la-la” to your festivities. Some of these activities are as follows:
The Harney County Chamber of Commerce and the city of Burns, with special help from Linda Whiting, will host the community Christmas Jamboree Saturday, Dec. 14. The jamboree will feature a variety of events that should be fun for “elves” of all ages.
• Breakfast with Santa will be held at Burns Elks Lodge No. 1680, 118 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, from 8-10 a.m.
• Vendors will be set up at the Harney County Community Center, 484 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. A variety of items, including jewelry, designer bags, Western and wildlife art, silver work, Mary Kay ® and Scentsy ® products, herbs, honey and beeswax products, handmade soaps, baked goods, religious materials and homemade hats, scarves and hair bows will be available for purchase.
• Outdoor vendors will be set up along North Broadway Avenue in Burns from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. These vendors will be offering soups, hot chocolate, hot dogs and other treats. Also, P.E.O. will be selling cards and calendars at Burns Ford Garage at this time.
• Broadway Deli, located at 530 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, will be hosting a kid’s coloring contest from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The deli will also offer hot cider and mulled wines.
• Gingerbread house contest voting will open at 10 a.m. at the Harney County Community Center. Contest entries are due at the chamber office, 484 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, by 5 p.m. Dec. 13. There will be both adult and youth categories this year, and prizes will be awarded to the winners who will be selected by popular vote. Contest winners will be announced at 4 p.m. Dec. 14.
• Cookie decorating and an ‘Elf’s Workshop’ will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Country Lane Quilts, 325 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns. The workshop will give children the opportunity to make and take home craft projects.
• Martial Arts America, located at 405 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, will be hosting games from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
• The Old Bakery Open House, featuring cookies, candles and trains, will be held at 255 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns (second floor), from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
• Face painting will be held at The Children’s Barn, 253 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
• A hayride and bonfire will take place at Washington City Park in Burns from 12 to 2 p.m. The hayride wagon will be drawn by two Clydesdale horses owned by Stacey Davies.
• Pictures with Santa will be taken at Ruthie’s In His Image Photography, 380 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, from 12 to 4 p.m.
• A Can Food Movie will take place at the Desert Historic Theatre, 68 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, at 2 p.m. Admission is free with the donation of three or more canned food items.
• The lighted Christmas parade down North Broadway Ave. begins at 6 p.m. This year’s theme is “Jingle Bell Rock.” Those wishing to enter a float in the parade are asked to submit a registration form to the Harney County Chamber of Commerce by Friday, Dec. 13 at 5 p.m. This will be a “snow or shine” event.
• A community bonfire and Christmas tree lighting will take place in the lot between Bike Burns and Sage Country Inn (across from Safeway) at 6:30 p.m. Free hot dogs and hot chocolate will be provided by Burns Four Square Church. The Chamber Music Society of Harney County and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints chorus will sing Christmas carols. The Clemens family will put up a nativity scene next to Bike Burns, which is located at 353 N. Monroe in Burns.
• An Ugly Sweater Social will be held at The Book Parlor, 433 N. Broadway Ave. in Burns, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The event will feature wine tasting, drawings, discounts, prizes, and a contest for the ugliest Christmas sweater.
For more information about jamboree events and times, contact the Harney County Chamber of Commerce at 541-573-2636. Schedules will be placed on the side of trash receptacles in front of businesses on North Broadway Avenue during the jamboree. Schedules may also be picked up during the jamboree at Linda Whiting’s booth in the Harney County Community Center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Perhaps you prefer to celebrate the season by “jingling your bells” or playing “pa-rum-pum-pum-pum” on your “little drum.” If that’s the case, a Christmas concert may be more your pace.
• The Chamber Music Society of Harney County Christmas Concert will be held Sunday, Dec. 8 at 3 p.m. at Harney County Church of the Nazarene. The event will feature local musicians who will perform in the orchestra, chorus and bell choir. Donations will be accepted, and a reception will follow.
• Carols by Candlelight, featuring soloists Ann Beal, Bettina Bowman, Connie Robbins and Michelle Yunker, will be held Sunday, Dec. 15, at 7 p.m. at Harney County Church of the Nazarene. Admission is free, and a reception will follow.
‘Shop ‘til you drop’
Those wishing to say “bye bye” to “big-box” superstores can look to local merchants, Christmas bazaars and craft fairs to complete their Christmas shopping.
• Home Spun Craft Fair will be held Dec. 7 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Memorial Building at the Harney County Fairgrounds. A variety of vendors will be selling items such as jewelry, holiday decorations, ornaments, quilted items, pine furniture, gourds, tole paintings, pottery and much more. Lunch, dinner and espresso will be available.
• Holy Catholic Church Christmas Bazaar will be held Dec. 7 at the Holy Family Parish, 678 N. Egan Ave. in Burns, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Vendors will be selling baked goods, wood crafts, handmade ornaments, knit and hand-sewn items, swags, wreaths, and much more. Lunch can be ordered from the parish hall kitchen.
• First Evangelical Lutheran Church, located at 394 S. Egan Ave. in Burns, will hold its annual Christmas bazaar Dec. 7 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be a selection of crafts and baked goods, as well as Rada Cutlery.
• Last Chance Christmas Bazaar will be held Saturday, Dec. 14 at 9 a.m. at Hines City Hall, 101 E. Barnes Ave. in Hines.
• Santa’s Last Stop Burns Paiute Tribe Christmas Bazaar will be held Dec. 21 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Gathering Center.
• Winners of the Merchants Christmas Giveaway will be drawn Dec. 20 at 5 p.m. Anyone who makes a purchase of $15 or more from one of the 37 participating local businesses between Dec. 2 and noon Dec. 20 can enter to win the giveaway. Multiple gift certificates from participating merchants, worth a combined total of $1,000, will be awarded. Participating merchants will also be entered for a chance to win a chamber membership.
‘The spirit of giving’
There are ample opportunities to show some “Christmas spirit” by giving to members of the community who might not otherwise be able to enjoy the holidays.
• Donations of non-perishable food items for Elks Christmas Baskets are now being accepted at Burns Elks Lodge, Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monetary donations may be delivered to the lodge or mailed to Burns Elks Lodge, 188 N. Broadway Ave., Burns, OR 97720. People who are in need of baskets may sign up at the Elks Lodge or call 541-573-6170 to be added to the list.
• Tree of Joy trees are located at Big R, Kings, The Children’s Barn, Ericksons Thriftway and Rite Aid. Those wishing to participate can pick a tag from one of the trees and purchase the gifts requested. For more information, call Nadine at 541-573-3003.
• The Burns High School (BHS) Leadership program and Central Oregon Marine Corps Reserve are collecting donations of toys, or money to purchase toys, for the Toys for Tots campaign. All of the toys will remain in the community and be given to children in need in Harney County through the local Tree of Joy program and the Burns Elks Lodge. To participate, donate a new toy to one of the drop off boxes by Dec. 11. Boxes will be located at BHS, Slater Elementary School, Hines Middle School, Big R, Rite Aid and the chamber office. Additional locations may be forthcoming. Monetary donations can be dropped off at BHS. Checks can be made payable to “Marine Toys for Tots Foundation.”
Letters to Santa
The city of Hines is helping out the post office and Santa Claus by receiving letters addressed to the North Pole in a special mailbox outside Hines City Hall, by the flagpole. Letters to Santa will receive a written reply if legible return addresses are provided. Hines Mayor Nikki Morgan said she “has a special connection with the North Pole elves that allows very timely responses.”
‘Deck the Halls’
Oregon Trail Electric Co-Op (OTEC) will be sponsoring holiday lighting contests in the cities of Burns and Hines. Additional information will be provided at a later date.
Something for everyone
Whether your plan to become “pen pals” or “breakfast buddies” with Saint Nicholas, warm yourself by the community bonfire, sport your ugliest Christmas sweater, cross names off your shopping list, or help bring Christmas cheer to a child or community member in need, you might say there is a little something for everyone to enjoy in Harney County this holiday season.