Horse Drawn Parade (copy)

In this 2017 file photo, a team of draft horses pull a wagon through the Old Town Horse Drawn Christmas Parade in Hamilton. The parade this year is Saturday, beginning at 6 p.m.

People will be gathering around a table or two to celebrate Thanksgiving today, but the turkey’s day will be short-lived as the upcoming weekend ushers in the winter holiday season.

For those still considering meal options today, the Potawatomi Inn is hosting its annual Thanksgiving Buffet from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Pokagon State Park, 450 Lane 100 Lake James, Angola.

While reservations have been recommended, open seating may still be available.

The menu includes fried chicken, carved roast beef, carved ham, turkey, pasta primavera, salads, side dishes and assorted desserts.

The cost is $24.99 for adults and $12.49 for kids 12 and under. The price does not include drinks.

For more information or to make a reservation, call 833-1077.

The holiday events for the weekend are as follows:

Santa’s Arrival and Downtown Lighting

On Friday, as the feast leftovers are packed away and the final fall decorations are traded for ornaments and tinsel, Mr. and Mrs. Claus will arrive on the Bryan family historic sleigh for the magical lighting of downtown Angola.

After their grand arrival, they will be waiting at the Brokaw Movie House to speak with visitors, with cookies and hot chocolate available.

Trine University’s mascot, Storm, will also be present for a meet and greet.

This event is made possible by the Downtown Angola Coalition.

Old Time Horse-drawn Christmas Parade

More than 40 horse-drawn carriages decked with Christmas spirit will take to the streets in Hamilton on Saturday for the Old Time Christmas Parade.

The parade features a new route this year, starting at Hamilton High School and proceeding to Brookside Park before ending at Town Hall. The route will not head to Gnagy Park.

Festivities will run 6-7 p.m.

Powers Church Christmas Service

Powers Church, 650 S. Old S.R. 1, Angola, will be holding its annual Celebration of Christmas on Sunday at 3 p.m.

Many talented people from area churches will be featured, and the public will be able to experience the church’s historic features, including original oak floors, wainscoting, wood stoves, pump organs and the recently restored 1880s wallpaper.

Jerry Sonner, Susan Sonner, Carolyn Powers and Sally Mowry — members of Top of Ohio Dulcimer Friends — will introduce the program with traditional carols on dulcimers. Kathy Aldrich will read the Christmas story with participation from the congregation. Aldrich and Blake Stevenson will accompany the audience on bass and guitar.

Because there is no heat in the building, everyone is invited to dress warmly and bring a lap blanket or quilt. Kerosene lamps will provide the lighting for the service, and hot cider and cookies will be provided afterward.

Pokagon Toboggan Opens for Winter

Pokagon State Park kicks off its 83rd toboggan season Friday, with runs open 10 a.m. — 6 p.m.

A special Story Time will be presented on Friday at 11:30 a.m. — 12:30 p.m. at the Nature Center where visitors can hear the story of a boy and his toboggan as they look for The Wish Tree.

On Saturday at 2-3 p.m., visitors can listen to Toboggan Tales at the Nature Center to learn how this unique winter attraction started and how it has changed over the years.

Starting this weekend, toboggan runs will be open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays.

The cost is $20 per hour per toboggan, and the park entrance fee is $7 per Indiana vehicle and $9 per out-of-state vehicle. Cash, check and Visa/Mastercard are accepted at the toboggan.

A driver’s license or state-issued ID is required as a deposit and rents up to four toboggans

All-day rentals and group reservations are not available.

Sleds are rented on a first-come, first-served basis, and each toboggan holds up to four people. Gloves must be worn to ride. No cameras or video equipment are allowed on the ride. Children can ride but must be old enough to understand directions and follow rules.

The warming center restrooms will be open and concessions will be available. However, there will be no indoor gathering space.

The track is refrigerated and doesn’t need snow to operate. It will close if the air temperature drops to 0 degrees or below.

The toboggan will be open for extended weekday hours from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. between Monday, Dec. 20, and Friday, Dec. 3. In addition, the toboggan will be open Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Jan. 17) and Presidents Day (Feb. 21.)

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