Despite dreary weather, Christmas in a Smalltown reflects seasonal joy

EVART — The weekend was more soggy than snowy.

There was a lot more rain than there were reindeer during Evart’s annual Christmas in a Smalltown celebration.

Still, despite the decidedly wet weather, a great crowd of folks turned out to take part in Saturday’s holiday gala.

It may have been drab, but it certainly wasn’t dreary.

Christmas in a Smalltown in Evart began with a bang as it does every year — with the arrival of some very, very special guests — Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Leaving their sleigh at an undisclosed location outside of town, (in compliance with FAA regulations), Santa and his always radiant wife were escorted into town by a contingent of Evart’s finest fire figthers.

Their arrival was heralded by hundreds of kids, (and their folks), waiting patiently in line at The Depot, and hoping for a few minutes of quality time with the Jolly Ol’ Soul.

Mrs. Claus brought a HUGE basket of goodies with her, and no visitor walked away without a sweet reminder of their visit.

As Santa and his friends settled in for a warm session of discussion in The  Depot, things really got hopping outside and over at Crossroads Community Church as well.

On the lawn between the  church and The Depot, horses and ponies were kept busy with kids lining up for pony rides. Tractors made their way through town with wagons filled with hay, and riders joining in holiday carol singing all along the way.

A roaring fire offered a warm spot to take refuge from the continually dribbling mist and rain.

The fire pit never lacked for a crowd of folks warming up before continuing on through  the many, many ‘stations’ of fun.

A couple of circus sized tents housed games and a carnival-like atmosphere.

Over in the parking lot of Crossroads, the ever popular Euro-bungy towers were in action all afternoon, with long lines forming inside the church so people didn’t have to stand in the rain.

Inside, there was one opportunity for fun and activity after another — games, face-painting, family photos, popcorn, a scavenger hunt of sorts, craft making, and stage presentations by Evart High School’s Jazz Band, and a dance performance by the  Stepping Up Studio.

Both  in and outside, there were places to grab a warm bite to eat and a hot cup of cocoa that dulled the damp.

Evart’s 2011 Christmas in a Smalltown may not have been a “white” celebration.

It may not have even been a “white-ish” celebration.

But is was a festive marking of the start of the Christmas holiday season in the very best traditions of small town America.

Hundreds of community members and visitors to the city joined in having a great afternoon of fun; in spending some exceptionally quality time with Santa before he headed off to other communities; and just in being together with neighbors and friends at this very special time of year.

Another huge success — by all accounts.