Door County Christmas celebrations kick into high gear the weekend after Thanksgiving. Both Sister Bay and Egg Harbor hold their annual celebrations this weekend — keeping Santa busy with plenty of tree lightings.
The weekend really starts, however, with the Jacksonport Thanksgiving Day Parade — a parade with a big heart that gives to members of the Door County community in need.
Below you’ll find a rundown of events. Happy celebrating!
Jacksonport Thanksgiving Day Parade
Thursday, Nov. 22
The annual Jacksonport Thanksgiving Day Parade & Benefit will step off at 10:30 am from the Jacksonport Fire Station. Now in its 22nd year, this fun-loving, eclectic parade — a labor of love put into motion by northern Door County residents — continues its mission of neighbors helping neighbors by raising funds for Paula Symons, who has has multiple plasma cell leukemia, as well as Feed and Clothe My People.
“We know the need in our community is great,” said Mary Witteborg, parade committee chair. “We are thankful to be able to provide some support and peace of mind for Paula and her family in this challenging time. What makes Jacksonport and Door County so special to us all is our tight-knit caring community, and we feel blessed to have the opportunity to give back.”
Colorfully dressed goats, horses and dogs dot the parade landscape with humans in tow carrying plastic buckets to solicit contributions. All of the money collected goes directly to the beneficiaries.
“The generosity and giving spirit we see from those who have supported this little parade and benefit for more than two decades now is overwhelming and heartfelt,” said Witteborg.
The parade starts at the Jacksonport Fire Station, takes a right on Highway 57 to Mike’s Port Pub where it turns around and heads back up the highway to Island Fever Rum Bar.
Anyone wishing to participate in the parade should be at the Jacksonport Fire Station by 9:45 am.
Raffle tickets for a $500 and $300 Door County weekend package are available now through the parade for $5 each or 5 for $20. You do not need to be present to win. For more information find the Jacksonport Thanksgiving Day Parade & Benefit on Facebook.
Friday, Nov. 23–Saturday, Nov. 24
Egg Harbor’s Holly Days Festival is a weekend full of old-fashioned holiday fun. Start the weekend with Breakfast with Santa at the Landmark Resort on Nov. 23, 8:30–10:30 am. Enjoy breakfast surrounded by seasonal decorations; take photos with Santa; decorate cookies; and create arts and crafts.
Also on Friday, Santa will arrive at Harbor View Park at 4:30 pm to light the Christmas tree. Sing Christmas carols; take photos with Santa; and enjoy complimentary hot chocolate and cookies. The tree will be lit at 5 pm.
Activities on both days include a Children’s Elf Hunt; the Mistle Dough shopping contest for adults; horse-drawn wagon rides narrated by the Egg Harbor Historical Society, starting at Mojo Rosa’s; and children’s activities from 10 am to 2 pm at the following locations: cookie decorating at Pink Bakery, holiday buttons at Liberty Square, glitter tattoos at Be Beauty and letters to Santa at Main Street Shops.
Santa will return Saturday at 10:30 am and make his way north through town. Have your cameras ready, and visit Santa Land at the Donald and Carol Kress Pavilion between 11 am and 2 pm. Prizes for the Elf Hunt and Mistle Dough shopping contest will be announced at Santa Land at 2 pm.
All events are free of charge, with the exception of Breakfast with Santa, but donations are welcome. For a complete schedule, visit EggHarborDoorCounty.org/HollyDays.
Capture the Spirit in Sister Bay
Friday, Nov. 23–Saturday, Nov. 24
Come and see Santa with his elves and favorite reindeer at the annual Capture the Spirit holiday lighting festivities on Nov. 23, 3–5 pm. Enjoy hot chocolate and cider before Santa arrives at 4:30 pm to light the Christmas tree and holiday light display. Join in caroling with Santa, and then walk to the Sister Bay-Liberty Grove Library for storytelling and holiday crafts.
The fun continues Nov. 24, 2–4 pm, with the annual Holiday Cookie Decorating event at the Sister Bay-Liberty Grove Fire Station.
In addition to these events, the annual Friends of Gibraltar Holiday Arts and Crafts Fair will be held Nov. 23–24, 10 am–4 pm, at the Sister Bay Village Hall; and businesses will also offer holiday treats and specials throughout the weekend. For more information, visit cometosisterbay.com.