Topeka holiday events give people something to look forward to

Local News

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – A longtime argument is: Do you wait to turn on the Christmas music and put up the tree until after Thanksgiving, or not? Well, for those who just cannot wait, groups in Topeka are giving Top City something to look forward to.

As a healthcare worker in Topeka, 2020 has not been an easy year for David Kelly. However, one thing he is looking forward to this year is the holidays.

“A little different after the year we’ve had, but Christmas always brings people together, so it’s a good thing,” Kelly said.

Multiple events are planned to occur over the next two months, like Lights at the Topeka Zoo, which is set to begin on Nov. 27 and lasts until Dec. 30.

Another longtime Topeka tradition to occur again this year is the 25th Annual Miracle on Kansas Avenue parade on Dec. 5, which this year will be a reverse parade.

“Our floats will actually be stationary on either side of the streets surrounding the Capitol,” said Stephanie Wilhelm, director of events for the Greater Topeka Partnership. “Then, the attendees who would normally stand along the street in large groups will now be in their own individual cars as families or small groups, and they will parade through the route.”

There will also be a window decorating contest happening throughout the month of December with businesses on Kansas Avenue. People can support local businesses, while also voting for their favorite display.

For people to partake in some shopping before the holidays, Evergy Plaza will be hosting two holiday markets featuring local vendors.

The first market will be on Nov. 16, followed by the second on Dec. 14.

“Obviously we haven’t gotten to gather and we haven’t gotten to see our friends or even a lot of our family,” Wilhelm said. “The holidays are really important to a lot of people, and I think even having events this way brings up morale a little bit, and still holds us together as a community.”

That’s exactly what they hope to bring, to celebrate the resilience we all have experienced this year, just like Kelly.

“There’s been so much stuff going on in 2020,” Kelly said. “Anything that can bring people together safely is a good deal.”

Another great option for the holiday is to grab a hot chocolate and head to the Winter Wonderland light display happening at Lake Shawnee Campground beginning Nov. 25.

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