With Thanksgiving arriving this week, local residents will soon be getting into the Christmas spirit with area holiday events.


Anna’s Sherley Heritage Park will host Christmas in the Park at the Anna Depot on Dec. 7 from 5-8 p.m. Activities will include face painting, creating reindeer food and enjoying a cup of cocoa with local police officers. At 6 p.m. there will be a short ceremony to light the Christmas tree and there will be free photos with Cowboy Santa. Children are also invited to bring their letters to Santa and place them in the Christmas mailbox during the event. The city has also partnered with Collin County Toys for Tots and there will be a Toys for Tots box at the Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony. The Anna Police Department and Anna City Hall have also been designated drop off points.


Food trucks from TC’s Tacos, Frazzy’s Gourmet Popcorn and Cross My Heart & Hope For Pie will also be on site for the event.


The Anna Christmas Parade will then be Dec. 14. Vendors will open inside First Anna Connect at 11 a.m. and live music will start at the same time on the downtown stage at 4th Street. The parade then starts at noon with free pictures with Santa scheduled for 1-2 p.m. at First Anna Church. Santa Land and vendors are scheduled to close at 2 p.m.


The Melissa Area Chamber of Commerce’s 2019 Christmas Parade and marketplace will be Dec. 7 with float lineup starting at 5:30 pm. The parade will begin at 6 p.m. and will travel down Cardinal Drive to Melissa Ridge School as in years past. The return route back to City Hall will be up Palo Pinto. The Parade Marshall this year will be the Melissa ISD staff and the theme will be “A Cardinal Christmas.”


Deadline for entry in the parade is Monday, Dec. 3.


Prior to the parade there will be a marketplace at the Melissa Ridge Education Center Cafeteria and Gym at 2950 Cardinal Drive instead of the Middle School featuring crafts for the kids, photos with Santa and Mrs. Santa, music by the school choirs, craft and merchandise vendors and much more. These activities will be from 2-5:30 p.m.


On Wednesday, Dec. 4, attendees will be able to experience the feel of a small-town Christmas as Celina ushers in the holiday season during Christmas on the Square, which begins at 5 p.m. The family-friendly event’s main focus is the lighting of 20,000 lights on the brand-new 30-foot-tall Christmas tree. The new festive decorations in the square feature an additional 50,000 lights, making for a total of 70,000.


Then the annual Prosper Christmas Festival will be Saturday, Dec. 7 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the downtown area. Held at Frontier Park the last two years to accommodate construction downtown, the 2019 festival returns to its original location, presenting expanded attractions, wider shopping opportunities, and all of those features that have set the festival apart from other festivals, including its historic downtown backdrop.


The free fun in Celina on Dec. 4 will include a holiday market and community booths at 142 N. Ohio St. There will also be inflatables for kids to jump on as well as free photos with Santa, so attendees should bring their own camera. Another great photo op comes in the form of a sled led by a real reindeer.


At 6:30 p.m., the Celina ISD Drumline will lead Santa and the Fire Department to the brand new tree, which Celina Mayor Sean Terry will then light. The event, presented by Celina Main Street and the city of Celina, os slated to last until 8 p.m.