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Stronger Together through Wonder: Weekly Message from Maggie Campbell, President and CEO of DAMC

“… for we need a little music
Need a little laughter
Need a little singing
Ringing through the rafter
And we need a little snappy
Happy ever after
Need a little Christmas now!”

How are you claiming Christmas?   

This is the question we’ve been asking ourselves this week at Downtown Arlington. We’ve been asking ourselves so many questions this year, haven’t we? And the answers seem so slow in coming. Our adult world is full of serious responsibilities to provide for our families while protecting ourselves and our community from the unabated coronavirus pandemic. Meanwhile, there’s a child inside each of us that just wants a little music, singing, and laughter at Christmastime, not to mention the promise of a happy ever after.  

Historically Downtown has been the place where Arlington has come to kindle the holiday spirit. You still can. We believe that claiming Christmas this year for your inner child (and your actual children) should be Number One on your To-Do list, and that Downtown Arlington venues, businesses, cultural partners and destinations are providing you really clever and safe ways to do just that.

To get you started, here are ten ideas for a snappy, happy Christmas courtesy of your Downtown Arlington community: 

  1. Downtown Holiday Markets! Here are three ways you can support local artists and small business: Thursday, Dec. 10 from 4:00-8:00 p.m., come out to the Downtown Arlington Urban Market, hosted by Legal Draft Beer Co., where you’ll find fifty vendors selling handmade arts and crafts, chef-driven treats, farm-to-table products, and one-of-a-kind gift ideas. On Saturday from 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m., don’t miss the Collected Treasures Holiday Open House which also kick-offs a big 50% off sale! Then be sure to check out Create Arlington’s Third Thursday Marketplace from 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. on December 17 with live music by The Sky Jazz Quartet.
  2. Bring your letter for Kris Kringle to Santa’s Mailbox, a bright red mailbox now in place during business hours at the Arlington Main Post Office, 300 E. South Street in Downtown. Families are encouraged to bring their children for a fun photo while dropping in their letters to Santa. Letters addressed to Santa’s 123 Elf Road address and postmarked by Dec. 15 are automatically routed to the USPS Operation Santa program, a nationwide effort to respond to the hundreds of thousands of letters sent to Santa from children and families annually. 
  3. Holiday Lights Parade organizers are drawing on the spirit of the season to offer a virtual city-wide Christmas celebration. On Saturday, Dec. 12, tune in to the Holiday Lights Parade Facebook page for interactive children’s games, Christmas carol sing-alongs, recorded programming, and other entertainment. 
  4. On Saturday, Dec. 19, First Methodist Church is showing The Polar Express drive-in movie style. 
  5. Join the Downtown Arlington Library on Wednesday, Dec. 16 for Mayor William's annual Holiday Pajama Storytime via the Library's Facebook and Youtube channels.
  6. Get your tickets now for Symphony Arlington’s live-stream Annual Carol Sing-Along and holiday concert on Thursday, Dec. 17.
  7. Throughout Advent, Downtown congregations are offering a variety of worship experiences, including First Baptist Church Arlington’s annual holiday musical. On Sunday, Dec. 20, FBCA will present Merry Christmas with Love in person (limited seating) and as a free live-stream event. 
  8. Knapp Heritage Park has a lovely holiday lights display this year, and on Fridays Dec. 11 and Dec. 18, the park will be open for you to explore.
  9. Theatre Arlington’s Musical Revue and Holiday Party runs through Dec. 12 and promises plenty of family-friendly Christmas cheer. 
  10. If your family is struggling to make ends meet, The Christmas Store at Mission Arlington can help. Family members enjoy a shopping experience while choosing gift items for each other. Details, store hours, and volunteer opportunities can be found on the website.

Ready for a little Christmas now? Details about these and other holiday activities and events can be found on our website

Shop Small: Downtown Delivers, Holiday Edition   

Downtown businesses have shown incredible resiliency in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, and now more than ever they need our help. Every cup of hot chocolate, charcuterie platter, gift item, and bottle of wine you choose to purchase locally will help our entrepreneurs stay in business. Please consider dining in or ordering take-out, delivery and curbside pick-up from your Downtown Arlington favorites during the holiday season. Visit #DowntownDelivers on our website for information.