More family-fun activities added to Limestone University’s “All Saints Christmas”Free Access

Horse & carriage rides, children’s crafts and full-length movie

Limestone University’s “All Saints Christmas” just got even bigger and better.

The holiday event on Saturday, Dec. 9, will now feature horse and carriage rides, Christmas crafts for the children who visit with Santa Claus, and then a full-length movie to wrap up the night. 

Previously known as “Christmas On Campus,” the University’s rebranded “All Saints Christmas” will take place during the same evening as the much-anticipated return of the luminaries to the campus and surrounding area.

Horse and carriage rides will be available on the front campus from 6:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m.

In addition, Santa will appear following the official tree lighting ceremony and will then make his way into the Winnie Davis Hall of History where he will greet the children and pose for photos. The first 200 children to visit with Santa will receive a special gift from Limestone.

One of Santa’s elves will also be there to take instant photos of the kids as they greet Jolly Old Saint Nicholas. Those photos can then be turned into a special Christmas craft thanks to Limestone University’s chapter of Educators Rising. The organization’s president, Hannah Tiede, said that craft projects, using the photos, will be available underneath the Limestone tent located outside Winnie Davis Hall of History. Educators Rising members from Limestone will be there to assist with the crafts.

The organization will also assist children with writing letters to Santa during the event.

Limestone’s chapters of Educators Rising and the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) will be co-sponsoring a viewing of the full-length movie “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” starting at approximately 8:30 p.m. Limestone University students and community members are invited to attend. The two organizations will be selling popcorn during the movie as a fundraising project. Limestone will be providing hot chocolate and other treats throughout the evening.  

Educators Rising is a community-based movement, in which chapters feed teacher preparation programs at institutes of higher education with the support of State Departments of Education and local funders and foundations. These entities come together to provide a clear pathway to increase teacher diversity and teacher quality. NAfME is a collaborative community that supports music educators and advocates for equitable access to music education.

“We are incredibly excited to be adding these new activities to what is already going to be a wonderful way to get the Christmas season into full swing,” said Chris Phenicie, Limestone’s Director of Community Engagement and On-Campus Events. “The horse and carriage rides and the crafts for the children are excellent additions to a great night. We appreciate our own students as part of Educators Rising and NAfME for sponsoring the crafts, letters to Santa, and the full-length movie. We encourage the entire community to come out to Limestone on December 9th to celebrate Christmas with all of our Saints.”

All Saints Christmas Itinerary Limestone University Front Campus Saturday, Dec. 9, 2023

Festivities for “All Saints Christmas” will get underway at 5:30 p.m. with front campus performances by the Limestone University Wind Ensemble and the Limestone University & Community Chorus. At 6 p.m., there will be a reading of the Biblical Christmas Story that will be intertwined with performances by the chorus. The Christmas Story, from the gospels of Luke and Matthew, recounts the birth of Jesus Christ. The reading will be followed at 6:15 p.m. by the official lighting of the Limestone University Christmas tree by Acting President Jeremy Whitaker.

Santa will be available inside Winnie Davis Hall of History starting at approximately 6:30 p.m. 

Throughout the evening, there will be more Christmas musical performances, thanks to the Limestone Steel Pan Ensemble and the University’s Jazz Band. In addition, Christmas classics such as “Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer,” and “Frost The Snowman,” will be featured on the large projection screen at the Granberry Hall Amphitheater, followed by the movie “How The Grinch Stole Christmas.” 

Limestone’s mascot “Bernie” and the University’s real-life Saint Bernard will also make appearances. Holiday treats and beverages will be available during the event.

The luminaries, weather permitting, will be placed on the front campus and surrounding areas near the University. Inclement weather and the coronavirus pandemic forced the cancellation of the luminaries the past three years. The luminaires are made possible each year by Limestone University Athletics and student-athlete volunteers. Preparations will start at 10 a.m. and the luminary lighting will begin at 4:30 p.m.

The tradition of the local luminaries dates back to 1984 when the late Les Gregory, a former Limestone staff member and graduate, arranged for 200 luminaries to be lit in honor of retired professor Lucy G. Wheeler. Since its inception, the luminaries at Limestone have grown to over 10,000 candles and the Christmas event has flourished into one of the most anticipated nights of the year at the University.

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