There’s no place like home for the holidays and, according to Mayor Kelleen Potter, “One of the best ways to bring a community together is holiday celebrations.”
An Old-Fashioned Christmas, which takes place between the Bank Block building and Heber’s City Center, is a time for the community to come together and — for a night at least — forget personal stresses, life’s worries and the valley’s growing pains.
This cheerful community event is a way to remember what’s most important: each other.
“Slow time down, sit and talk to your neighbor and enjoy a nice evening: that’s the whole purpose of it,” says event creator, Tom Stone. “This growing community will have an opportunity to come together to create unity and community.”
The More, The Merrier
Four years ago, Tom Stone, the manager of Guild Mortgage and owner of the historic Bank Block building, wanted to give back to the Heber Valley by hosting a community-centered Christmas celebration. To do so, he rallied the businesses in his building and together they started a unique local tradition.
The community response to the first celebration was more receptive than Tom could have imagined, and the next year was even bigger. Last year, Heber City stepped up to the plate and added to the activities, especially by way of the tree lighting ceremony.
“Last year, we discussed hosting a similar event with the city as sponsor,” explains Mayor Potter, “but we concluded it would make more sense to team up with the successful Old-Fashioned Christmas celebration. This partnership resulted in a bigger and more widely-supported event. With the beauty of Christmas in our historic downtown, it was truly magical!”
Last year’s attendance was estimated at more than 2,000 people and, as the celebration continues to grow with our community, even more people are expected this year.
A holiday experience meant to delight the young and the young at heart, the festivities will include live reindeer, cookie decorating at the Ideal Theater, writing thank-you letters to servicemen and women, Christmas music, wagon rides, pony rides, food trucks, hot chocolate, an ice sculptor, live musical performances, a scavenger hunt with prizes, tours of the historic Bank Block building, warm fires and a tree lighting ceremony at 7:45 p.m.
“The Old-Fashioned Christmas event is a homegrown event where one can experience the warmth and charm of an ‘old-fashioned Christmas,’” explains Heber City Manager Matt Brower. “The city is honored to partner with Tom Stone to facilitate other traditional elements to the event, such as the tree lighting, caroling and warm chocolate.”
In short, the event includes everything a perfect town Christmas party should! The best part? An Old-Fashioned Christmas is sponsored by some of our local small businesses, so except for optional food and Santa pictures, the event is completely free for all to enjoy!
It’s Better To Give Than Receive
In addition to spreading the holiday cheer, An Old-Fashioned Christmas also gives the gift of charity. Two special families, chosen from those who applied for the local “Shop with a Cop” program, will be VIP guests at the celebration!
“If you come to the help of someone in need at Christmas and you sing around a tree, you just kind of make giving simple,” says Stone. And as we come together as a community to celebrate this holiday season, it’s important to remember how easy it is to help support our neighbors in need. Whether it’s through supporting “Shop with a Cop,” lending a helping hand or donating your time, money or belongings, it always feels better to give than receive.
As for Stone’s gift to the community, the inspiration was simple. “I want people to feel like this is Heber City’s celebration,” he explains. “There was a comment at the party I heard a couple of times: ‘a lot of our economy and effort is put into bringing tourists to the valley. You know, what about just doing something for our city?’ That is what this is.”
So, join your neighbors in celebration at this year’s An Old-Fashioned Christmas. Reminisce on the good old days, make new memories and — most importantly — give and receive the gifts of unity and community at this very special Christmas event.
There’s nothing old-fashioned about that.
December 6 | 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Letters + Coloring
Photos with Santa