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Busy holiday season calendar kicks off

| November 23, 2004 11:00 PM

The Christmas holiday season is getting under way in the Libby area with numerous weekend events scheduled.

A Holiday Food Drive has kicked off the season with people dropping off food items at the Libby Area Chamber of Commerce, Libby Revitalization, The Western News and The Printing Press.

When food is dropped off people may enter their names to win a Treasure Chest full of surprises.

All food items will be given to the Food Pantry for holiday baskets.

The annual Parade of Lights and Community Christmas Tree Lighting will be Friday, Dec. 3, at 7 p.m.

³Last year¹s parade was one of the most successful, but we know it can be even bigger and better,² said Louise Rice, Chamber director. ³We would encourage you to consider creating a float for the parade to add to the festivities, as well as to promote your business.²

The Chamber will have a judging for floats with the following prizes in Libby Bucks: 1st place, $80, 2nd place, $40 and 3rd place, $20. There is no entry fee. Call the Chamber for an application.

³We would like to encourage businesses to stay open until 7 p.m. or later for those out and about enjoying the parade,² Rice said.

Businesses are being encouraged to host an ³open house² evening with cookies, hot cocoa, and if the businesses have room, provide entertainment. Children¹s craft tables are also fun, Rice said.

If people need ideas for crafts or entertainment, call LRI or the Chamber.

There will be a Santa in the parade and pictures with Santa by For His Glory Photography at the tree lighting celebration. ³Because the season is a theme itself, this year we have chosen not to have a theme for our holiday promotion,² Rice said. ³This leaves the door wide open for many different creative ways to express the joys of the winter season.²

LRI will be sponsoring a new holiday event — a Window Decorating Contest for all Libby area businesses. Cash prizes will be awarded for the most festive window displays with $200 for first place, $100 for second place and $50 for third place. Judging will be done on the afternoon of Friday, Dec. 3, and the winners will be announced after the Christmas tree lighting celebration. There is no entry fee. Call LRI for more details and to get an application.

³We are encouraging all business property owners to show their holiday spirit by putting up Christmas lights,² said Betty Jo Wood, LRI director. ³Yes, it can be a time consuming and cold process, but the end result is so beautiful.²

To go along with this, LRI is collecting donations of white lights. The more lights we get, the more public spaces we will light up (i.e.: the trees on Lincoln Boulevard, the trees outside of the police department, the Band Shell, and more.

³If you have a string or two of white lights that you would like to donate — they will not be returned — contact LRI and we will pick them up,² Wood said.