Santa Claus is coming to downtown Oneonta — along with gingerbread creations, holiday movies, horse-drawn wagon rides and dancing mice.
The city of Oneonta and Main Street Oneonta are presenting annual holiday activities starting Saturday, when Santa will arrive in a Main Street parade at 11 a.m. The jolly old fellow will visit with children at his cottage on Muller Plaza until 3 p.m. that day and at other times on other days during the season.
Also on Saturday, the Fokine Ballet Company will participate in the parade and afterward present “The Mice on Main Street!”
For an hour after the parade, “Nutcracker” mice will be in various locations on Main Street for a bingo game, organizers said. Families wishing to participate will be given a “mouse bingo card” with riddles about the location of each mouse, organizers said. When a family finds the mouse described, the card will be stamped.
After all mice have been located, the bingo card may be entered into a drawing for free tickets to “The Nutracker!” holiday ballet presented by Fokine Ballet Company. Organizers said the post-parade event was inspired by a book called “Mice on Main.”
According to MSO, an organization that supports and promotes business, other holiday activities include the following:
• Oneonta’s 15th annual Gingerbread Contest will take the theme “Merry Fairy Holidays!” Organizers said creations are to be inspired by fairy tales or by the “magic of elves and fairies.” The works are to be dropped off downtown on Dec. 2 and 3 and will be displayed from Dec. 4 to Jan. 1. Contestants may enter in adult, family, youth and professional categories. For more information about contest rules, visit http://sweethomeoneonta.com/Gingerbread_MSO_Flyer_2013.pdf .
• The city’s Christmas Tree Lighting festivities will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 5. with the illumination at 6 p.m. The free event will feature horse-drawn wagon rides, dancers and refreshments. Gingerbread contest winners will be announced, and time to visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus will be available.