Celebrating the holiday season

Staff Writer
Lake Sun Leader
Lake Sun Leader

The holiday season kicks off in just a few days. How do you plan to celebrate? While some things have been postponed this year, there are a few events you’ll be able to visit with Santa, do some holiday shopping, and help out local families in need this season. Here are a few ways you can spend the holidays at the Lake.

Enjoy a Thanksgiving Buffet

While many people enjoy cooking and hosting a table full of family and friends, there are ways you can make it a little less stressful. Grocery stores, restaurants and hotels offer catering and full holiday buffets so you can spend more time out of the kitchen and enjoy time with the ones you love.

Local grocery stores offer a variety of catering options. You can have the entire meal prepared or just order a few sides. Many locals choose to spend their Turkey Day at local resorts where you can find large buffets with everything from Oysters to Prime Rib and dozens of desserts. Check out the Lodge of Four Seasons, Margaritaville Lake Resort, Old Kinderhook, the Inn at Grand Glaize, the Regalia Hotel & Conference Center, and  the Lodge at Port Arrowhead to see what they are serving.

Camden on the Lake is offering Thanksgiving meals to-go this year. Cost is $25/person with a 10-person minimum.

Go to a Charity Event

It wouldn’t be the holidays without helping someone in need. Many organizations are helping needy family this season by making sure they have a few presents under the tree. Christmas for Kids held  December 12 helps provide gifts to hundreds of kids around the Lake area. The event will be held at Campana Hall at the Lodge of Four Seasons beginning with a cocktail party at 5:30 p.m. and dinner at 6:30 p.m. A large silent and live auction is held. Entertainment will be provided by Tony B the Piano Man.

Attendees are asked to bring a new, unwrapped toy ($20 value) or a $20 cash donation to the event. The gifts are given to needy families. Tickets are $70/person with sponsorships available.

Other organizations including Citizens Against Domestic Violence, Kids’ Harbor and the Child Advocacy Council have clients who could use some holiday cheer this year. Contact them to see how you can help.

Let there be Light

The Enchanted Village of Lights will be open for the season at the Laurie Fairgrounds each night from November 19-January 2. It’s the largest drive-through light park in the Lake area. Free but donations accepted. Carriage rides are being offered on Saturday nights. For more information, contact Barbara at 573-569-0440.

The City of Osage Beach Holiday Light display is held at the Osage Beach City Park from November 28-December 31 from 5-9 p.m. Free and open daily.

The Lake West Lighted Christmas parade is held November 28 in Laurie. It begins around 6 p.m. at Central Bank and ends at the Laurie Mall. Bundle up and watch as lighted floats drive by!

Celebrate the Season

Old Kinderhook turns into a winter wonderland each year when they open up the ice rink on Thanksgiving weekend. Daily and season passes are available.

While you are there, spend time with Santa and the elves during the Christmas Village held Friday-Sunday from November 27-December 20. Festivities include Friday night Character Nights on the Ice, MU Synchro Skaters performances, winter bingo, movies in the Hook, elf storytelling, s’mores, letters to Santa, DIY ornaments and tons of other activities.

Hayrides are held from 5:30-9:30 p.m. every Friday & Saturday. Cost is $10 per person (ages 4 and under free). Blankets and music provided during the 20-30 minute ride. Breakfast with Santa is on Sundays from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at The Hook Cafe.

Check their website for a full list and a schedule.

Do Some Holiday Shopping

Looking for something different for someone on your gift-giving list?

While it might be a little smaller this year to allow for social distancing, the annual School of the Osage Holiday Bazaar will be held December 5 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. There will be a maximum of 80 vendors, with a variety of great items for sale — from food to handmade gifts, crafts and spirit wear. Attendees will be encourage to wear masks.

Osage Beach holiday light display.