Kick off the holiday season right in downtown

IT SHOULD BE A festive and fun weekend coming up. The Christmas season will kick off Friday in downtown Plymouth with the annual Holiday Gathering parade down Mill Street starting at 7 p.m.

That will cap a full day of festivities and sales at downtown businesses including the annual Chili Cook-off contest from 4-7 p.m. And it will be followed by the annual tree lighting ceremony in Veterans Park.

The parade should draw a huge throng of celebrants, as it always does, to the festively-lit downtown area.

If you’re among the crowd, take a moment to look up and take in the Christmas lights and decorations along the street.

Those lights and decorations have brought the holiday spirit to downtown for many, many years, but now they’re fading and showing their age.

A little over a year ago the Plymouth Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the city of Plymouth, launched a fund-raising drive to replace the aging decorations.

The goal was to raise $25,000, with the chamber kicking in an initial $2,000 and the city pledging to match up to $15,000.

The drive was targeted to run through Dec. 31 of this year, with the goal of having new decorations purchased and ready for installation for the 2017 holiday season.

With just over a month left, the drive has stalled somewhat, according to chamber Executive Director Mary Hauser, about $2,500 short of the goal.

That’s ever so close, and it can only be hoped that a generous helping of the holiday spirit will create a last-minute surge that will push the drive over the top.

Plymouth has proven time and again that it has the heart to support a worthy cause and stepped up to meet the challenge every time.

New decorations to bring the holiday spirit to the entire community would be a great way to show our community pride and spirit.

Donations can be made by contacting the chamber at their office at 647 Walton Dr. or by going either to the chamber website at or to the online fundraising page at

After you’ve looked up at the street decorations during the parade, take another look around downtown and take in all the different shops and stores you’ll find there.

Then, if you didn’t get a chance to shop in them Friday, come back on Saturday during Small Business Saturday and do some Christmas shopping for unique and one-of-a-kind gifts that you will only find in downtown Plymouth.

It will be the perfect way to show your holiday spirit and your community spirit all at the same time – and have some great fun doing it as well.

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