Christmas cheer in New Castle |

Christmas cheer in New Castle

What a great way to kick off your holiday spirit – the eighth annual holiday celebration, from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday in beautiful downtown New Castle.The Burning Mountain Park tree lighting excitement will be held at 5:30 p.m. Children can chat with Santa on Santa’s sleigh and receive a free photo and goodie bag in the Burning Mountain Park Gazebo. This portion of the festivities is sponsored by Bob Gordon Construction, Mr. T’s Hardware, RE/MAX/HomeTown Real Estate, New Castle Café, and Eldon and Connie Thurstin.Free hot dogs and hot chocolate will be given away at a booth next to the basketball court, sponsored by the First Baptist Church’s Youth Group. And while you’re in that vicinity, why not hitch a ride on the free hay wagon rides, sponsored by Talbott Enterprises.Simultaneously, just a few hundred feet west on Main Street at Ritter Plaza, there is the Chili Cook Off. For just $3, you can sample at least eight varieties of chili and vote for your favorite. Proceeds from this event go to United Way and Salvation Army. Winners will receive gifts from The Picket Fence, Lakota Canyon Ranch and Mr.T’s.Hot cider, chocolate, coffee and cookies will be given away at Ritter Plaza, sponsored by New Hope Church.Moving a couple hundred feet west at the New Castle Community Center, The Christmas in New Castle Craft Fair will be held from 5-9 p.m. Friday and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday in conjunction with the holiday celebration. Crafters from all over the Western Slope will present their wares, including crocheted items, jewelry, Native American crafts, homemade natural soaps, candles, blacksmith art, wood items and carvings. The Congregational Church of the Valley ladies will offer a variety of tasty Christmas cookies for those of us who don’t have the time or patience to make them ourselves. The ladies bring their delicious temptations to the bazaar on Saturday.For their part of the holiday celebration, the Leo’s Club (the Youth program of Lions Club) of Coal Ridge High School will present a bake sale on Friday night and serve breakfast and lunch on Saturday for hungry shoppers. Shopping at the Picket FenceThe Picket Fence has lots of wonderful Christmas inventory, so stop by, enjoy some hot cider and Christmas goodies, and see what you can find. The shop will be open through Dec. 23.Just down the street from The Picket Fence is the Brandt household, which once again offers its breathtaking holiday lights display for spectators traveling west on Main Street. If you see Leroy Brandt, give him a big pat on the back for this truly astonishing creation.Recall election informationThe only polling place for New Castle in the Dec. 13 recall election will be the New Castle Community Center. Folks living in Apple Tree Park will also vote at the community center.Kay Vasilakis’ column “New Castle News” appears every other Thursday. For news tips and inspirations, please call 945-8515, ext. 513, or e-mail

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