MOUNT VERNON — The Christmas holiday season was ushered in with style Sunday afternoon in downtown Mount Vernon. Despite early morning rain and occasional sprinkles throughout the day, the 2011 Mount Vernon Christmas Parade and Walk took place with the theme of “A Christmas Stroll with Mother Goose.”
Numerous downtown merchants opened their doors to welcome in the many visitors, young and old, who came out to participate in an array of holiday festivities. Hot chocolate, wassail, Christmas cookies and other delectable goodies were being offered at many businesses in a means of helping spread the spirit of the season.
A Makers Market was once again set up in the Buckeye Candy building as local artisans and crafters were displaying their goods for sale. Naomi Heckman was selling chocolate treasures at the market. It was her first year at the Christmas Walk, but she has also participated in the Gambier Craft Show and will be showing at the Mount Vernon Farmers Market. “The crowd has been pretty good,” said Heckman. “With the weather, it may be down a little bit.”
Eric Figurski was visiting the Makers Market with his family. “We came for the parade and for the kids to go to the Secret Santa Gift Shop,” said Figurski. “There’s been a decent crowd today. Plus, we’ve gotten free cookies.”
Up further on South Main Street was the Secret Gift Shop where youngsters could take advantage of good deals on some unique Christmas gifts. Santa’s elves were even on hand to offer free shopping assistance and gift wrapping.
Helping out at the gift shop was Mount Vernon High School senior Ben Nielson. “It was fun,” said Nielson, explaining he helped children pick out toys and select gifts for their parents. “I saw a lot of people out despite the weather.”