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Coming Together For Christmas TreE-town

This year, the Elizabethtown Area Chamber of Commerce (EACC) is spearheading a collaboration between numerous local businesses and organizations to focus holiday efforts under one brand: Christmas TreE-town. EACC executive director Heather Hohenwarter said that the initiative will highlight the many events that take place in the Elizabethtown area during the holiday season.

"The idea behind Christmas TreE-town was to curate the many existing events under one banner," Hohenwarter explained. "It made sense to create a central source of information for families racing to check things off their hectic holiday to-do list, like 'visit Santa,' 'see Christmas lights,' and 'buy teachers gifts.' So why not do it all in charming Elizabethtown?"

A website for Christmas TreE-town, http://www.christmastree-town.com, recently launched and includes a comprehensive events calendar, suggested itineraries, and featured events such as the first-ever Star Barn Village Christmas Drive-Through Light Show opening for the season on Friday, Nov. 23, and longtime traditions like the annual Elizabethtown Holiday Parade, which will begin at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8. The theme of this year's parade, "An Old-Fashioned Christmas," will also be carried out in the inaugural holiday window decorating contest being coordinated by the Chamber.

Elizabethtown-area businesses may enter the window decorating contest by registering at http://www.christmastree-town.com in order for judges to have a complete list of participants to include in judging. The deadline for completed entries will be Thursday, Nov. 29. Judging will take place between that date and the day of the Holiday Parade, at which the contest winners will be announced. Rep. Dave Hickernell, Cindy Phillips, and Tyler Smith will serve as judges. A cash prize will be awarded to the winner, along with gift baskets to the second- and third-place contestants. Plus, everyone is encouraged to vote for their favorite window display at the "Christmas TreE-town" Facebook page in order to determine the Fan Favorite - the winner of which will also receive a gift basket filled with treats and gift cards to area attractions.

Christmas TreE-town will also feature an array of new decorative banners, flags, and - of course - Christmas trees in the center square to add to the charm of the holiday season in Elizabethtown.

The Christmas TreE-town Express will offer a complimentary bus shuttle for visitors traveling to and from the interactive model railroad displays created by The Train Guys at the Elizabethtown Public Library, 10 S. Market St., and the Masonic Village and Elizabethtown (MV&E) Model Railroad Club at Masonic Village, 1 Masonic Drive. It will operate on a continuous loop between the library and the Masonic Village Health Care Center parking lot from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays, Dec. 1, 8, and 15. On these days, the last shuttle back to the Masonic Village will leave the library at 3:45 p.m.

Additionally, downtown businesses will offer special promotions, sales, and activities during the E-Town Nights Old-Fashioned Christmas celebration on Friday, Dec. 14, from 6 to 9 p.m.

For more details, readers may email christmastreetown@gmail.com, visit http://www.christmastree-town.com, or contact Kelly Fuddy at the EACC at 717-361-7188. Local churches, groups, and businesses with holiday events that they would like to promote are also encouraged to contact the Chamber to have those added to the Christmas TreE-town website calendar.

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