MANCHESTER >> About a dozen lighted tractors of various descriptions, from large to small, including one towing a wagon with a new born calf, paraded through downtown Manchester saturday night.
The warnmer than usual December weather brought out a larger than usual crowd of onlookers and spectators along the parade route, which ran from the Dorr Farm on Route 30 through the roundabout and back up Main Street. Afterwards, several of the tractors continued the procession south on Main Street to Equinox Terrace, an assisted living facilty, so the residents there could have a glimpse at the tractors festooned with Christmas lights.
Berta Magenniss, the executive direector of the Manchester and the Mountains Chamber of Commerce, gave a running commentary on each of the tractors, which included representatives from the Manchester Special Olympics, Long Trail School and The Elf Express. The parade concluded with a float holding Santa and Mrs. Claus, who were making a return visit to Manchester after having helped light the town Christmas tree the previous weekend.
The lighted tractor parade was part of a month-lonmg series of events tied to the holiday season and known as "Manchester Merriment." Next weekend features an Inn tour, and the following weekend, Dec. 19-20, will see the return of the "Elf Express" excursion train rides, hosted by the Manchester Lions Club.
For a list of upcoming Manchester Merriment events, see below, or visit the chamber's website at http://visitmanchestervt.com/merriment/
Inn Tour Weekend – December 11 and 13
Friday December 11:
9am til 9pm Shop Manchester – Exceptional Opening with Merriment Specials. Stores participating are: Decorative Interiors, Family Footwear, Mountain Goat, Heinels, Olive & Ives, Banana Republic, Gap, EMS, Olympia Sports, Perfect Piece, JOY all things underthings, Bass, Above All Vermont, Long Ago and Far Away, Eddie Bauer Outlet, Overland Sheepskin Company, J.Crew Factory, Kate Spade New York, LOFT Outlet, Eileen Fisher Company Store, Chico's Outlet, Yankee Candle, Five Seasons Vermont, Michael Kors Outlet, New Balance Factory Store, Theory, Ann Taylor Factory Store, Clark's Bostonian, Talbots Outlet, Armani Outlet, Yves Delorme, NYDJ, Vineyard Vines, Brooks Brothers Factory Store, Coach Outlet, Johnston & Murphy, Polo Ralph Lauren, Crabtree & Evelyn, Vermont Bird Place & Cosmetics Company Store, Epoch 18 and more!
6-8pm – Men's Night at JOY all things underthings. Get shopping advice; gift wrapping; refreshments.
6:30 – 10:00 p.m Route 11/30 Pub Crawl
Saturday – December 12
•10:00 – 12:00 p.m. Historic Walking Tours Manchester's Historical Society providing free walking tours of Bonnet Street and Main Street.
•1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Inn Tours – our inns/lodgings each uniquely decorated for the holiday welcome visitors for the afternoon (13 inns participating!) Buy Tickets for the Inn Tours and/or the Community Potluck Supper HERE.
•4:00 pm – Tree Lighting in Arlington with Caroling & Holiday Treats, hosted by the Arlington Garden Club
•6:00 – 8:00 p.m. – Christmas Community Potluck – Manchester Public Library Savoring community favorites – Roast Beef, Turkey and Stuffing and Seafood Bisque – at an old fashioned Vermont Community Christmas Pot Luck Dinner in Manchester's beautiful new Community Library. Please bring a dish that feeds 6-10 people. Last Name: A-F: Salads, G-M: Sides & N-Z: Dessert.
Buy Tickets for the Community Potluck Supper and/or the Inn Tours HERE.
Dinner sponsored by Olympia Lodge, The Perfect Wife, Vermont.com – Entertainment for the whole family
Come for three days of fun. Stay in a participating inn/lodging* and "leave with a tree" from Vermont!
The Elf Express Weekend – December 19 and 20
ElfExpress•Green Mountain Train Rides with Christopher Pop-in-kins. Family entertainment on board from Santa and his elves – 5 rides each day. Tickets available (while they last) online or at the Manchester and the Mountains Regional Chamber of Commerce. Sponsored by The Manchester Lions Club.