Metro-East Living

Get in the holiday spirit at many Christmas events this weekend

Local O’Fallon-Shiloh area youth Christina Harvey-Ervin sits on Santa Clause’s lap last year.
Local O’Fallon-Shiloh area youth Christina Harvey-Ervin sits on Santa Clause’s lap last year.

What’s Happening for Nov. 30.

Noon Thursday, Nov. 23, was the deadline to appear in today’s What’s Happening. We must receive your event in writing with a contact phone number for questions. Due to the large number of submissions, non-profit events are run only one time in print, will be edited and appear in the week before the event date.

Email: Mail to: Lifestyle, Belleville News-Democrat, 120 S. Illinois St., P.O. Box 427, Belleville, IL 62222-0427. Questions, call Heidi Wiechert at 618-239-2500.

Holiday Fun

▪ ‘The Bethlehem Journey’ — 6:30-9 p.m. Friday, 5:30-8:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Grace Church, 5151 N. Illinois St., Fairview Heights. Interactive outdoor walking trail that allows you to walk from Nazareth to Bethlehem at the time of Jesus’ birth. Free. Trail is handicapped accessible. or 618-234-5910.

▪ ‘It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas’ Holiday Cabaret and Fair — Activities at 6:30 p.m., show 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Activities 1 p.m., show 2 p.m. Sunday. St. Mary’s Parish Center, 1722 W. Main St., Belleville. The Christmas Cabaret Show features 25 performers and a live orchestra performing music from holiday-themed movies, TV specials and Broadway musicals. The fair features games, craft projects for kids, seasonal food and beverages, vendors, gift basket raffles and more. Tickets available at door. Tickets cost $5 to $10. Children under 5 free. Proceeds to benefit St. Mary’s Parish and Rising Stars, a non-profit youth education and performing arts group. Information: 618-409-0015 or

▪ Belleville Historical Society 1950s Holiday Party — 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday. Midcentury Modern Architecture Museum, Blazier House, 8501 W. Main St., Belleville. Tickets $25 on the night of the event. This event features period holiday music, attendance prizes, raffle and silent auction.

▪ Winter Wonderland Vendor and Craft Fair — 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Upstairs from the Children’s Dyslexia Center, Scottish Rite Building, 1549 Frank Scott Parkway West, Belleville. Over 50 vendors and crafters. The event benefits the Children’s Dyslexia Center.

▪ 7th Annual Lighted Christmas Parade — 6:30 p.m. Friday. Mascoutah. Starts at Second and Church Streets and proceeds to main Street and then East to Lebanon and then west on Church Street.

▪ Immaculate Conception craft fair and cookie booth — 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Immaculate Conception School, 321 S. Metter, Columbia. More than 70 vendors for holiday shopping. Cookies and candy sold by the pound. This event features raffles, Santa’s Cottage for kids. Eighth-graders will sell breakfast, lunch and snacks, and proceeds from Santa’s Cottage, go to support class trip to Washington D.C.

▪ ‘Christmas Presents: Strings That Sing’ — 7 p.m. Saturday. Unity Baptist Church, St. Clair and Maryville Road, Granite City. No admission charge. To benefit Granite City Community Care Center. Cellist: Elaine Boda. Piano stylist: Rich McKinney.

▪ Tradition of St. Nicholas event — 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. Jarrot Mansion State Historic Site, 124 E. First St., Cahokia. Saint Nicholas will share holiday treats and sweets with visiting children. Families are encouraged to attend, take photos, and bring a non-perishable food item to be donated to families in need in Cahokia. Admission is free. Co-sponsored by the Jarrot Mansion Project, Cahokia Connections Church Alliance and the village of Cahokia.

▪ 24th Annual Weihnachtsfest: German Christmas Festival — Sunday. St. James Parish Center, 423 W. Madison St., Millstadt. Craft fair opens 10 a.m. German food served 11:30 a.m. St. Nikolaus will arrive in a parade at noon. This event features a holiday cookie walk, live entertainment, and Santa and Mrs. Claus. No admission charge. Proceeds will benefit Millstadt Sister Cities’ Youth Ambassador Exchange and other programs with Gross-Bieberau, Germany.

▪ Visit with Santa at Mel Price Park — Beginning Dec. 1 and ending Dec. 23. 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, 6 to 8 p.m. Monday-Friday. Mel Price Park, 1200 Caseyville Ave., Swansea. Each child will receive a gift from Santa and be able to chose an ornament from the Christmas tree to take home. Pictures are a $5 donation.

Some Christmas decorations in Belleville. Steve Nagy

▪ Sensory-friendly photo sessions with Santa for families of children with special needs — 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Sunday. St. Clair Square, 34 St. Clair Square, Fairview Heights. Free. Space is limited and families are encouraged to reserve a time at “Sensory-Friendly Santa” is held in partnership with Autism Speaks.

▪ Old Fashioned German Christmas — 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Maeystown. Activities include a mini house tour, kickoff to the Monroe County celebration for Illinois Bicentennial, music, artisans, quilts, vintage toy displays, shopping, food, carriage rides and St. Nicholas. Information: 618-580-5875 or

▪ Royal Holiday breakfast — 9-11 a.m. Saturday. Bellecourt Place, 120 N. Jackson, Belleville. Buffet breakfast, sing-a-longs and photo opportunities with Cinderella, Belle, Prince Adam, Elsa and Anna. Tickets $20 for ages 13 and up, $15 for ages 12 and under. Breakfast benefits Hospice of Southern Illinois. Information or reservations: Diana Haynes, 800-233-1708 or

▪ 5th Annual Winter Market — 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. Goshen Market, near the Madison County Court House building, downtown Edwardsville. The market features artisans, baked goods, crafters, locally grown items, boutique gifts. The Parks Department will have patio heaters and hot chocolate. or 618-692-7538.

▪ The Floyd and Judith Crowder Holiday Concert featuring The St. Louis Metro Singers: Sounds of the Season — 7 p.m. Saturday. St. Paul UCC, 127 St. Paul St., Columbia. Free concert. 618-660-5790.

▪ New Switzerland Model Railroad Club: Christmas Train Show — 6 to 9 p.m. every Friday in Dec., 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Saturday in Dec., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 10 and 17 only. McGinley Chrysler dealership showroom, 11 W. Shamrock Blvd., Highland. Admission is free. Everyone is invited to bring model trains to run on the club’s layouts and enjoy the display.

▪ Breakfast with Santa — 9-11 a.m. Saturday. Zion Church, 117 W. White St., Millstadt. Visit with Santa. This event features games, crafts and a hot breakfast. Sponsored by the Millstadt Community Choir. Tickets: child $10, adult $5. Tickets available at IGA and Millstadt Pharmacy or at the door. Information: 618-795-1518.

▪ McKendree ‘Show Choir Holiday Spectacular’ — 7:30 p.m. Friday. Hettenhausen Center, McKendree University. Admission cost is a donation of canned food for the Lebanon Food Pantry or gloves, scarf or mittens for Lebanon Elementary School.

▪ ‘Tails, Trails and Twinkles’ — Walk at 5:30 p.m. Sunday. National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows, 442 S. De Mazenod Drive, Belleville. Bring your canine friends and family members to enjoy a walk through the Way of Lights. Presented by Scott Credit Union. A “Barket and Expo” is at 5 p.m. with pet-friendly vendors. Dogs must be on leashes. Dogs only. 618-397-6700 or

▪ Winter’s Aire Concert — 6 p.m. Saturday. Corpus Christi Catholic Church, 205 Rasp St., Shiloh. Featuring The Chamber and Concert Choirs of McKendree University. Cost $20 per person. This event also features a wine tasting and silent auction. Proceeds from silent auction benefits Operation Orphan. 618-632-7614.

▪ Christmas parade — 5 p.m. Saturday. Mt. Vernon. Parade begins on 7th Street near the former Mount Vernon Township High School and it ends at the corner of 13th and Main Streets. A Santa story reading, cookie decorating, free hot chocolate, concessions, activities and more will follow the parade.

▪ Santa visits The Makeup Department and Academy — Noon to 4 p.m. Saturday. 1043 Century Drive, Edwardsville. A free event. Elf ears, glitter gel and icicle effects will be applied to the first 100 children when they visit Santa. Candy and cookies will be provided.

▪ Upper Alton Association: Breakfast with Santa — 7-11 a.m. Saturday. Franklin Lodge, 1513 Washington Ave., Alton. Breakfast costs $7. Santa arrives at 9 a.m. for pictures. Children can decorate free cookie at 8:30 a.m. Candy provided by Sherry’s Snacks. Make your reservation on the Facebook event page.

▪ Bethalto Christmas Village — 5 to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Bethalto Central Park, 213 N. Prairie St., Bethalto. Event features lightened Christmas-themed cottages, live music, food, Santa Claus, holiday vendors and crafters, live nativity scene and more. Free admission. Music from 6 to 8 p.m. each night. 618-377-8051.

▪ Annual Snowflake Festival — 6 to 8 p.m. Friday. Robert E. Glazebrook Community Park, 1401 Stamper Lane, Godfrey. A free, old-fashioned festival complete with carolers, hot cocoa and pictures with Santa for a donation of a non-perishable food item for the Crisis Food Center. 618-466-1483.


▪ 11th Annual Gingerbread 5K run — Race at 8:30 a.m. Saturday. Parks and Recreation Office, 510 W. Main St., Belleville. Fee $30 per participant. Register at the parks office or go to Awards ceremony to be held after race at the Historic Lincoln Theater.

▪ Edwardsville Kennel Club Dog Show — 8 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Belle Clair Fairgrounds, 200 South Belt East, Belleville. Starts 8 a.m. each day and is done when showings are complete. Free admission and parking.

▪ Free Square Dance — 2 to 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Gibault Catholic High School, Columbia Ave. and Moore St., Waterloo. Potluck with meat provided. Bring side dish. Caller: Bo Semith. Sponsored by Waterloo Quadrilles Square Dance Club. 618-939-7069.

▪ ‘Handling Stress’ talk — 1 p.m. Friday. Morrison-Talbott Library, 215 Park St., Waterloo. Kristina M. Heafner of The Wellness Champions will be the speaker. Learn how to minimize stress and maximize your longevity. Techniques will be taught to lower blood pressure, fight insomnia and limit fatigue. Register: 618-939-6232 or

▪ Red Cross Blood Drive — 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday. Memorial Hospital East, 1404 Cross St., Shiloh. Appointments recommended but not required., sponsor code: MemorialShiloh or call 800-733-2767.

▪ Southern Illinois Coal Mine Subsidence: Myths, Facts and Solutions presentation — 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30. Collinsville Memorial Library Center, 408 W. Main St., Collinsville. The presentation is free and open to the public. Presenters include: Jerry Marino of Marino Engineering Associates, Inc., Brent Guttmann of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and Kathy Moran of the Illinois Mine Subsidence Insurance Fund. Information:

▪ St. Luke Luncheon, Card Party and Bingo — Noon, Tuesday. St. Luke’s Parish Hall, 226 N. Church St., Belleville. Cost $7. No reservations required. Featuring cards, bingo or any game you choose with prizes. Menu: turkey, dressing, gravy apple salad, cake and drinks. Bring canned items for Community Interfaith Food Pantry.

▪ Illinois Speaks: Granite City Community Conversations — 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30. Six Mile Regional Library District, 2001 Delmar Ave., Granite City. “Strengthening our Property Values,” is presented in partnership with the Illinois Humanities Council’s Illinois Speaks series. This is one of a series of community conversations designed to discuss ideas to make Granite City better. Information: 618-452-6238, ext. 755.

Club News

▪ Alzheimer’s Association ‘In the Moment’ support group — 7-9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30. Oak Hill, 623 Hamacher, Waterloo. Anyone who cares for or has a loved one with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease is welcome to attend. This is the last support group meeting for the year. Information: 618-939-3488, ext. 1248.

▪ Granite City Senior Social Club: Christmas Party — 12:30 p.m. Sunday. Granite City Township Hall, 2060 Delmar Ave., Granite City. Catered dinner at 1 p.m. Entertainment: “Sixties Chicks” at 2 p.m. Dance band: “Alley Kats” from 3 to 5 p.m. Attendance prizes. Members $10, non-members $15. Information or tickets: 618-910-8198 or 618-444-6771.

▪ Polish American Ladies Society — 11 a.m. Tuesday. Bellecourt Place, 120 N. Jackson, Belleville. Meeting and Christmas luncheon. Wearing a favorite Christmas sweater is optional. Bring unwrapped toy or $5 gift cards for children’s Christmas.

▪ O’Fallon Garden Club — Holiday party, 6-10 p.m. Tuesday. Katy Cavins Community Center, 308 E. 5th St., O’Fallon. Holiday wreath making demonstration by Sandy Richter of Sandy’s Back Porch. Bring a wreath form, gloves, floral wire, wire cutters, trim and a side dish to share. Club will provide fried chicken and drinks. If you want to participate in cookie exchange, bring three dozen cookies and an empty container. Reservations to Kimberly Atkins, 757-751-5965 or

▪ St. Clair County Garden Club — 11:30 a.m. Tuesday. Crehan’s, 5500 North Belt West, Belleville. Meeting and Christmas party. Cost of luncheon, $13. The program is “Past Presidents’ Day.” The study of “New Floral introductions” will be by Marti Gibson. To change or cancel luncheon reservations, contact Dianna McCoy at 618-791-2246 by Friday, Dec. 1.

The “Home for the Holidays” winning house in 2016 was decorated by Tom Hester. Megan Braa

▪ Signal Hill Neighborhood Association: Neighborhood Decorating Contest — Judging on Friday night, Dec. 8. Any home within Signal Hill Neighborhood Association boundaries can enter. Signs will be placed in front yards of the winners.


▪ Aviston Legion Fish & Chicken Fry — 4:30-7 p.m. Friday. American Legion Post 1239, 601 S. Clinton, Aviston. Cod, catfish, shrimp, chicken strips, sides. Eat in or carryout. 618-228-7311 or

▪ Caseyville Fish Fry — 4-7 p.m. Friday, Caseyville VFW Post 1117, 415 N. Long, Caseyville. Fish plates, desserts, sandwiches, burgers and more. Bingo at 7 p.m.

▪ Collinsville Fish Fry — 3-8 p.m. Friday, Collinsville VFW Post 5691, 1234 Vandalia, Collinsville. Eat-in or carryout. Cod, catfish fillets, tilapia, sides.

▪ Collinsville Fish Fry — 3-8 p.m. Friday, Collinsville American Legion, 1022 Vandalia St., Collinsville. North Atlantic cod, whole catfish, sides, desserts. 618-345-2508.

▪ Collinsville Fish Fry — 4-7:30 p.m. Friday. Knights of Columbus Hall, 1 Columbus Plaza, Collinsville. Eat in or carryout. Fried/baked cod, catfish, sides. 618-345-1492.

▪ Evening in Athens — 4-8 p.m. Saturday. Sts. Constantine and Helen, 405 Huntwood Road, Swansea. Greek food, homemade pastries. Carry outs available. 618-277-0330.

▪ Fish Fry, St. Elizabeth Church — 4-7 p.m. Friday. St. Elizabeth Church, Granite City. Cod, catfish, pollock, Jack salmon, shrimp. Eat in or carry out.

▪ Freedom Farm Fish Fry Fridays — 4-8 p.m. Friday. Freedom Farm, 6355 Hilgard Memorial Drive, Freeburg. Due to popular demand, fish frys are back every Friday. 618-539-6095 or

▪ Highland Fish Fry — 4-7:30 p.m. Friday, VFW Post 5694, 1900 VFW Road, Highland. Eat in or carryout. 618-654-6367.

▪ Lunch-to-go — 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Holy Dormition, Orthodox Parish, 300 N. 4th St., Benld. Dinners or a la carte: cabbage roll, cabbage noodle, meat-filled crepes and rolls. Pre-orders: Sandy Petty, 217-839-7220.

▪ Mascoutah Fish Fry — 5-8 p.m. Friday, Mascoutah VFW Post 7682, 620 Donaphan St., Mascoutah. Dine in or carryout. 618-566-2288.

▪ Millstadt Fish Fry and Jam Session — 11 a.m.-2 p.m., 4-8 p.m. Friday, Millstadt VFW Post, 200 Veterans Drive, Millstadt. 618-476-1180.

▪ Okawville Fish & Chicken Fry — 5-8 p.m. Friday, 205 N. Hanover St., Okawville. American Legion Post No. 233. Eat in or carryout. 618-243-6545.

▪ O’Fallon Fish Fry — 4-8 p.m. Friday, Knights of Columbus Hall, 402 E. U.S. 50, O’Fallon. Cod and bluegill, burgers, hot dogs, sides. Eat in or carryout. 618-632-6229.

▪ O’Fallon Fish Fry — 4-8 p.m. Friday, VFW Post 805, 221 W. First St., O’Fallon. Fried and grilled fish, chicken, sides and desserts. Carryouts. 618-624-2651.

▪ Quail Club Fish Fry — 5 to 8 p.m. Friday. Quail Club, 8303 Concordia Church Road, Belleville. Cod, walleye, shrimp, wings, burgers, sides and desserts. Carry outs available. No phone orders.

▪ Swansea Fish Stand — 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 216 Service St., Swansea. Cod, walleye, catfish, shrimp and more. Saturday: fried chicken. 618-222-7171.

▪ Troy VFW Fish Fry — 4-7 p.m. Friday, Troy VFW Post 976 and Auxiliary, 123-A W. Market St., Troy. Cod, catfish, jack salmon, baked fish, chicken strips, shrimp. Dine in or carry out. 618-667-8387.

▪ Walton’s Chicken Dinner — 4-7 p.m. Tuesday. Knights of Columbus, 5420 Old Collinsville Road, Fairview Heights. Homemade desserts. Carryout, 618-632-5222.

▪ Walton’s Fish Fry — 3-8 p.m. Friday, Knights of Columbus, Hall, 5420 Old Collinsville Road, Fairview Heights. Homemade desserts. Carryout, 618-632-5222.


▪ Bridge — 11:45 a.m. Thursday. Collinsville Senior Center, 420 E. Main St., Collinsville. To participate, must have played bridge before. 618-310-1289.

▪ Bridge — 11:45 a.m. Tuesday. Senior Center, 10025 Bunkum Road, Fairview Heights. Sponsored by Caseyville Township. 618-310-1289.

▪ Cribbage Club — 6:30 p.m. Thursday. 1 Columbus Plaza, KC Club, Collinsville. Nine games played against nine different opponents. Yvonne Bright 618-344-1521 or John Bilski 618-398-1029.

▪ Euchre Tournament — 7 p.m. Friday. Partner night. Smithton Senior Center, 711 S. Main, Smithton. 618-233-3370.

▪ 2017 Law Enforcement Torch Run “Tailgate Trivia Knight” — Game at 7 p.m. Saturday. O’Fallon Knights of Columbus, 402 E. U.S. Highway 50, O’Fallon. Doors open at 6 p.m. 10 rounds of trivia plus a silent auction, live auction, card shuffle, 50/50, team spirit attire contest, table decorating contest and more. The cost is $30 per player or $240 for a table of eight. For reservations, call 618-654-6680.

▪ Freeburg High School Music Boosters Trivia Night — Doors open 6:30 p.m. Trivia at 7 p.m. Saturday. St. Joseph’s Parish Center, 9 N. Alton St., Freeburg. Cost is $80 per table, eight players per table. Silent auction, 50/50 raffle and more. Reservations call 618-971-6253.

▪ 4th Annual Signal Hill School PTO Trivia Night — Doors open 6 p.m. Game 7 p.m. Bel-Air Bowl, 200 S. Belt West, Belleville. Tables of no more than eight players, $80 per table. Must be 21 or older to participate. This year’s theme: Festive Holiday Sweater. Also featuring silent auction, 50/50 raffle, “Sleigh of Spirits” raffle, $5 mystery box gifts. Reservations: Kyle Selliers,

▪ Edwardsville Parks: Holiday Art Contest — Contest for children in kindergarten through sixth grade. Color, paint or draw a picture no larger than 12 by 14 inches for one of the following themes: Holiday in downtown Edwardsville, holiday at Leclaire Park, holiday at City Park, my family holiday. Submissions may be dropped off at the Santa House, City Park, Edwardsville or delivered to the Edwardsville Park Office, 118 Hillsboro Ave., Edwardsville. Winners will be displayed from Dec. 18-29 at Wildey Theatre. Information: 618-692-7538 or


▪ Curtain’s Up Theater Company presents ‘A Christmas Story’ — 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 30, Friday, Saturday and 2 p.m. Saturday, Sunday. Wildey Theatre, 252 N. Main St., Edwardsville. A live play. Tickets $15 adults, $12 seniors, $10 child. Tickets can be purchased online:

▪ 12th Annual Winter Bluegrass Fan Appreciation Show — 7 p.m. Saturday. American Legion, 1414 W. Main St., Mascoutah. $7 adults, $3.50 children. Featuring George Portz and Friends of Bluegrass, Thunder and Lightning Cloggers, Lit’le Miss Country and Junior Fiddler Frolic. George Portz, 618-632-1384.

▪ McKendree Chamber Ensembles Concert — Noon, Thursday, Nov. 30. Hettenhausen Center, McKendree University. Featuring brass and woodwind performers. Open to the public and admission is free.

▪ McKendree Jazz Ensembles Concert — 7:30 p.m. Monday. Hettenhausen Center, McKendree University. Directed by Dustin Shrum. Open to the public and admission is free.

Worth the Drive

▪ Small Grains Field Day — 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday. Scratch Brewing Company, 264 Thompson Road, Ava. $10 donation is suggested. Parking is free. Farmers, brewers and bakers will gather to learn about growing and selling organic grain crops. Event sponsored by the Southern Illinois Farming Alliance, Regenerate Illinois, and the Prairie Rivers Network. Potluck following. Bring a plate, utensils, and a dish to share. Register: or 618-370-3287.

▪ ‘Olde Alton Art and Craft Fair’ — 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Alton High School, 4200 Humbert Road, Alton. Christmas goodies for sale from a variety of crafters. Breakfast and lunch will be served. Free parking. All proceeds benefit the Alton Band and Orchestra programs at Alton Community School District. 618-474-6996.

▪ St. Louis Jazz Club presents ‘Cornet Chop Suey’ — 2-4:30 p.m. Sunday. Moolah Shrine Center Oasis Room, 12545 Fee Fee Road, St. Louis. Tickets available at door. Free parking. Members $15. Non-members $20. 314-972-8298 or

▪ Ste. Genevieve Holiday Christmas Festival — Parade at 11 a.m. Saturday. Ste. Genevieve, Missouri. Following the parade, there will be music concerts, free hot dogs for kids under 12, free trolley rides, free photos with Santa and a Christmas tree lighting ceremony. 573-883-7007 or

▪ ‘The Great Pyramids of St. Louis: An Ancient Metropolis’ event — 7 p.m. Tuesday. Missouri History Museum, 5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis. Author will speak about new book that reveals nearly 1,000 years ago a massive pyramid studded city stretched from St. Louis, across East St. Louis, and to the Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site. $16 Amazon books. All profits help fund monthly programs at the museum.