AFTON — This charming St. Croix River town transforms into a winter wonderland for its annual “Village Holiday” event Friday and Saturday presented by the Afton Area Business Association.
The two days of festive, old-fashioned fun begins at 5 p.m. Friday when the village “lights up” festive lights and torches. Friday night events run until 8:30 p.m. Family Day Saturday is 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and filled with fun events for the whole family.
Guests are asked to bring donations for the Third Annual Afton-Lakeland Girl Scouts Mitten Tree, located in front of Baglio’s. Warm hats, coats, mittens and scarves will be donated to Valley Outreach to help area families in need.
Windmill Marina, Lighthouse Yacht Sales, Xcel Energy, New Horizons Academy Oak Park Heights, Maplewood Audi, Kitchens of Stillwater, County Market, Lakeview Health, Valley Orthodontics and the Pioneer Press sponsor the Afton Village Holiday. Visit exploreafton.com for more information.
Candlelight Night, 5 to 8:30 p.m Friday, events include:
- Free horse and carriage rides
- Festive shopping with special discounts and complimentary treats and beverages. Participating shops include Creative Cottage, Baglio’s of Afton, Chelsea Rose Antiques, Squire House Gardens, JJ’s Boutique, and Afton Leather.
- Complimentary wine tasting at Swirl Wine Shop
- Afton Museum — Help decorate the holiday tree (bring an ornament) plus complimentary refreshments
- Free chair massages and special discounts at Calla Lily Day Spa
- Strolling carolers (River Falls High School Choir)
- Live music by Silver City Millers at Sail Away Café
- Food/drink specials at the Afton House, Sail Away Cafe and Current
- Complimentary cookies and cider at Afton House Inn
- Complimentary old-fashioned mulled wine at Squire House Gardens
- Home baked treats, cider and cocoa, plus a warm bonfire at Afton Care Senior Homes
- Complimentary Ginger Cookie S’mores and coffee at Selma’s Ice Cream Parlour
- Afton Historic Walking Tour (Pick Up a Map at Afton Museum)
Family Day, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday events include:
- Breakfast and photos with Santa plus frame decorating at the Historic Afton House Inn, 9 to 11 a.m.
- Kids Stocking Promotion — pick up a holiday stocking at Sail Away Café, the Afton House or Selma’s and collect free treats and toys at Afton shops and restaurants.
- Free Horse and Wagon rides (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)
- Cookie decorating and holiday ice cream at Selma’s Ice Cream Parlour
- Letters to Santa station in Market Square. Cocoa and treats.
- The Afton Museum — see our exquisite holiday train, face painting, crafts, refreshments and more.
- Create a bobber ornament with Children’s Book Author Deborah Jo Larson (One Frozen Lake), plus book signing, 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m, Current
- Old-fashioned kids crafts at Afton Care Senior Homes
- Strolling carolers (Hudson and White Bear Lake High School Choirs)
- Lunch with Santa at Sail Away Café, 11:30 am to 1:30 pm
- Baglio’s of Afton Holiday Style Show at Afton House Inn. Seating at 12:30 p.m., show at 12:45. Advance reservations, 651-436-1506.
- Holiday entertaining food samples and complimentary homemade mulled wine at Squire House Gardens.
- Festive hair tinsel hosted by Making Waves Salon, in Market Square (fee applies).
- Free kids Christmas goody bags kits at Creative Cottage Taste of Christmas at St. Mary’s Church of Basswood Grove — featuring traditional Christmas treats to sample and buy, such as spiced cider, fruit soup, roomigrot, rice pudding, jula kaka, wild rice soup, cookies and candy. Plus craft bazaar with unique gift items.
- Afton Historic Walking Tour (pick up a map at Afton Museum)
- Live music at Sail Away Café (starts at 6 pm)
- Open skating at St. Mary’s Point Arena (6:15 to 8:15 p.m.)