The holiday season officially will get underway at “It’s a Wonderful Life in Atkinson,” on Nov. 28.

The event, sponsored by the Atkinson Heritage Society, will be from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Nov. 28 and will include an Enchanted Holiday Forest Contest. 


The holiday season officially will get underway at “It’s a Wonderful Life in Atkinson,” on Nov. 28.
The event, sponsored by the Atkinson Heritage Society, will be from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Nov. 28 and will include an Enchanted Holiday Forest Contest.  

The Holiday Forest will be set up in three locations and will feature more than 50 Christmas trees, holiday wreaths and a new addition, gingerbread houses. Anyone interested in decorating a tree, wreath or gingerbread house for the Enchanted Forest is asked to contact Beth VanVooren at (309) 936-7422 or (309) 945-3382. Those planning to decorate a tree may use a tree of their own, or they may borrow one from the Heritage Society. All trees in the Forest must be artificial trees.   

The entries in the children’s division, for ages 16 and younger, will be on display at 510 North State St. 

The trees decorated by adults will be displayed at 111 West Exchange and the exhibit of wreaths and gingerbread houses will be at 112 West Exchange.

Atkinson Heritage Society members are asking that after the exhibit, the wreaths be given as a donation for the live auction and fundraising initiative to help cover costs of the event. 

Awards will be presented for trees, wreaths and gingerbread houses.  Prizes for entries in the adult division of the Enchanted Forest are, for trees, $200 for first place; $100 for second place and $50 for third place; in the children’s tree decorating contest, $100 for first place, $50 for second and $25 for third place; wreath contest, $200 for first place, $100 for second and $50 for third; for the gingerbread houses, $100 for first place, $50 for second, and $25 for third.

There will be a $50 prize for the People Choice Award, and people may vote for their favorite tree by donating pennies for each vote.  All proceeds will be given to the local food pantry.
Decorating and set-up dates for the Enchanted Forest will be Nov. 22 to 25. 

Judging of the trees will be on Nov. 26.  The auction of the wreaths will be at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 28.

In addition to the Enchanted Forest of trees, wreaths and gingerbread houses, the festivities will include:

• 5 p.m. – Santa lights the Village Christmas Tree

• 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. – Enchanted Forest at three downtown locations.

• 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. – visits and pictures with Santa at 510 North State Street.

• 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. – Mrs. Claus reads to children at the library and there also will be treats and
games.

• 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. – ornament decorating at the Town Hall.

• 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. - cookie decorating at the Town Hall.

• Festive holiday food throughout the community.

• Pork sandwiches at the State Street parking area.

• 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. - St. Anthony’s spaghetti supper.

• Little Miss Flame’s Toys for Tots collection at the Atkinson Fire Station.

• 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. – silent auction at 112 West Exchange Street, of stained glass pieces
donated by Mel and Phyllis Heckman.

• 7:30 p.m.  – auction of wreaths and stained glass “Santa’s of the World” at 112 West Exchange.

• “Atkinson” apparel – throws, T-shirts and other items for sale at 112 West Exchange.

• 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. – “Cookies and Cocoa” at former Ford Garage.

• Angel Tree – clothing and goods for those less privileged at 112 West Exchange.

• Historic downtown buildings decorated for the holidays.