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Christmas Traditions: Your Chance to Dream Again

I wanna see Christmas through your eyes; I want everything to be the way it used to be …”

If you can relate to Gloria Estefan when she sings “Christmas Through Your Eyes,” then you owe it to yourself to head to Historic Main Street and experience the wonder that is Saint Charles Christmas Traditions.

Come with the kids – borrow some if you have to – and watch as they exclaim over meeting Santa and Mrs. Claus. Share in their delight as they meet and greet more than 40 Legends of Christmas, including Jack Frost, Susie Snowflake, the Sugar Plum Fairy and so many more.

Of course, Rudolph is a bit busy, but on Dec. 17-18, from 3-5 p.m., kids of all ages can meet some of his antlered friends when the Reindeer Flight Instructor arrives at the Historic Missouri First State Capitol State Historic Site, 200 South Main Street.

At 3 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays, be sure to visit the Kister Park Gazebo in the 400 block of South Main Street, where you can twirl, tap and taffy twist with Clara, the Nutcracker Prince, the Sugar Plum Fairy and Herr Drosselmeyer at the Land of Sweets Dance Party. Have your smartphone or camera ready to capture the photos ops that are sure to be plenty!

Saturdays and Sundays are the best times for kids to enjoy the annual festival, but adults might consider attending on Wednesday or Friday evenings.

Come with friends and enjoy dinner at one of the many restaurants along Main Street, then step out into the brisk night air for a little strolling, shopping and time-hopping.

The Cobblestone Wassailiers will be happy to entertain you with a classic carol or two – and they won’t mind if you join in with your best “fa-la-la-la-la!”

On Wednesday evenings, from 6:30-8:30 p.m., enjoy a special reading of “’Twas the Night Before Christmas” by author Clement Clarke Moore. If that doesn’t make you feel like a child again, what will? The reading, along with musical accompaniment, take place every 15 minutes in the historic Peck Brothers residence at the First Missouri State Capitol on South Main Street.

On Friday nights from 7-8:30 p.m., gather at the Bike Stop Café, 701 Riverside Drive, to roast marshmallows with the Legends of Christmas. Feeling like a kid again? What about a naughty kid?

Of course, the rule is “you better not cry, you better not pout,” but not every Christmas legend is oh-so-nice.

On Wednesdays from 6:30-8:30 p.m., some of Santa’s naughtier friends – Krampus, the Mouse King and Belsnickel – will be kicking up mischief on North Main Street.

Whatever night you visit – Wednesday, Friday or Saturday – you won’t want to miss the candlelight procession that brings each day to a close. Join the Legends of Christmas as they make their way to the Kister Park Gazebo for a sing-a-long of traditional Christmas carols lead by the Cobblestone Wassailiers.

This is it – your chance to dream again and experience the wonder of the holidays through the eyes of your inner child.

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