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Stroll into town this weekend for the holidays

Annual event will be a DIY occasion as COVID-19 pandemic continues

Santa waves to the crowd from a Lake Placid Volunteer Fire Department truck during a past Holiday Village Stroll parade down Main Street. This year, Santa will be on parade throughout the village Saturday evening, Dec. 12 due to coronavirus concerns. (Photo provided — ROOST)

LAKE PLACID — Organizers of the annual Holiday Village Stroll are working hard to make sure residents and visitors don’t have a blue Christmas this year. They haven’t canceled the 11th annual event, but it will be scaled back.

The Holiday Village Stroll this weekend — Dec. 11 to 13 — will be altered to adhere to public health restrictions in place due to the coronavirus pandemic. It will be more of a “do-it-yourself” affair rather than a community celebration.

No gatherings. No singing of Christmas carols by high school students at the Paul White Memorial Band Shell. No official lighting of the tree at Mid’s Park (the lights will be just turned on). No sitting on Santa’s lap, holiday movies at the Palace Theatre, gingerbread house workshop or skating at the Olympic Center’s 1932 Rink.

“We’re going to have a letters to Santa mailbox at Mid’s Park,” Bethany Valenze said during the virtual Lake Placid Business Association meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 8. She is the event coordinator, volunteer director and Lake Placid marketing representative at the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism and co-organizer of the Holiday Village Stroll. “We’re really trying to dress up Mid’s Park as best as we can since there’s not going to be Santa.”

While the Yule Log hunt is on hold this year, there will be a scavenger hunt.

“The clues are going to be in the windows, and that kind of draws people down to Main Street,” Valenze said. “It doesn’t draw unnecessary traffic into the stores, but it gets people down Main Street looking in the store windows and possibly going in to shop.”

For more information, visit the Holiday Village Stroll website at https://www.holidayvillagestroll.com/.

Below are some of the other Holiday Village Stroll happenings.

5K Jingle Bell Run/Walk

The annual Jingle Bell Run/Walk 5K race around Mirror Lake sponsored by Adirondack Health will be a virtual event this year instead of a community event on Saturday morning.

“This year we will miss the costumes. We’ll miss the sound of jingle bells and cheering spectators on Main Street,” the event’s website states.

People have three days to do their own 5K Jingle Bell Run/Walk, from Dec. 11 to 13, anywhere, not just around Mirror Lake (“6 feet apart, please!”). The event benefits the Fit For Life program at Adirondack Health. A sign-up table will be located at the main municipal parking lot near the Lake Placid Convention Center. The first 100 people get a free face shield. As always, people are encouraged to bring a new/unwrapped toys to benefit Essex County WIC families.

For more information and to register, visit online at https://www.active.com/running/virtual-events/virtual-adirondack-health-jingle-bell-run-walk-2020.

Holiday craft kits

Holiday Village Stroll organizers will be offering to-go craft kits, which will include supplies — even the scissors and glue — and a set of instructions. They will be available at participating hotels and the Lake Placid Visitors Bureau on the first floor of the Convention Center.

Scavenger Hunt

There will be hidden holiday symbols, such as a Christmas tree or gingerbread man, in store windows during the Main Street Scavenger Hunt. There are three age groups — 13 and under, 14-20 and 21-plus — and each group will win a $100 shopping spree on Main Street.

People can fill out the online form on the Holiday Village Stroll website — HERE. Or people can print the page from the website, fill it out and place completed forms in a drop box at Mid’s Park or the Visitors Bureau.

The scavenger hunt takes place all three days of the Holiday Village Stroll.

Virtual bedtime story

Families can enjoy two virtual bedtime stories as read by Wilmington author Maxwell Eaton III at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 12. He will be reading “The Tomten” by Astrid Lindgren and “My Wonderful Christmas Tree” by Dahlov Ipcar on Facebook Live on the Holiday Village Stroll Facebook page, https://m.facebook.com/holidayvillagestroll/.

“Put on your favorite Christmas pajamas, grab your favorite snack, and get comfy,” the event’s website states.

Eaton’s children’s books are sold locally.

Santa’s Fire truck parade

There will be a parade this year, but like everything else, it will be different. No Santa in the bucket of the fire truck down Main Street. Instead, Santa will be riding on the fire truck around the village, starting at 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 12 at the Lake Placid Volunteer Fire Department on Old Military Road. The parade will last about 100 minutes.

Below is the parade route.

Leg 1: 40 minutes

¯ Left onto Old Military

¯ Right onto Averyville Road

¯ Left onto Jersey Drive

¯ Left onto Bonnie Road

¯ Left onto Tamarack

¯ Right onto Old Military to end — turn onto Cascade Road

¯ Left onto Newman Road

¯ Right onto Winter

¯ Right onto Johnson

¯ Left onto Balsam — continue to Hurley Avenue, right onto Hurley

¯ Left onto Trillium Drive

¯ Left onto Station Street

Leg 2: 30 minutes

¯ Right onto Old Military

¯ Right onto Mill Pond Drive

¯ Left onto Colden Avenue

¯ Left onto School Street

¯ Left onto McLenathan Avenue

¯ Right onto McKinley Street

– Right onto Wesvalley Road

¯ Right onto Oneida Avenue

¯ Right onto Grandview Avenue

¯ Left onto W. Heights Avenue

¯ Left onto Hillcrest Avenue

¯ Left onto Acorn Street

¯ Left onto Grandview Avenue

¯ Right onto Elm Street

¯ Right onto Essex Street

¯ Left onto Acorn Street

¯ Left onto Nash Street

¯ Right onto Wesvalley Road

¯ Right onto Greenwood Street

Leg 3: 30 minutes

¯ Left onto Hillcrest Avenue

¯ Left onto Saranac Avenue

¯ Right onto Victor Herbert Road

¯ Right onto Interlaken Avenue

¯ Left onto Mirror Lake Drive

¯ Left onto Parkside — to end of Parkside

¯ Right onto Morningside Drive

¯ Through stoplight onto Sentinel Road

¯ Right onto Newman and back to fire department