December Downtown: Bring on the FUN!

There’s no doubt that Downtown Laurel is a special place, but it shines especially bright during the Christmas season.  Whether you’re admiring the meticulously decorated store windows or taking a stroll under the majestic oaks of 5th Avenue, we invite you to breathe in the magic of the holidays.  Laurel Main Street invites you to fill up, hang out, and kick back while you savor the joy of small-town Christmas.

Make Their Spirits Bright

Are you looking for ways to occupy your youngest family members and visitors?  Make plans to participate in the joy of making with these creative holiday offerings:

Art Class at Lauren Rogers Museum of Art — December 14th from 3:30 – 5:00 p.m. — grades K5 – 6th — create your own holiday wonderland with abstract art, winter watercolors, and snowman portraits.  While you’re in the neighborhood, enjoy the charming preserved and restored homes lining Laurel’s brick-paved 5th Avenue.

Enjoy an integrated retail & DIY experience at HAND+made by Clairmont & Co.

Unleash your creative side at Magnolia Alley Artists Co-op, a unique studio where artistic opportunities abound!

Discover the Magic of Enchanting Downtown Laurel

Hidden History: Geo-caching the History of Laurel provides fun for everyone – to kids from 1-92. Go on a “treasure hunt” with your friends or family this holiday season! All around Laurel, containers are hidden at locations with historic, economic, or cultural significance.

Contact Sweet Somethings Bakery to book a carriage ride through downtown.

On December 22nd, from 5-8 PM our downtown merchants will host a very special Christmas after-hours event. Most business will offer extended hours and special events. Lott Furniture Co. and The Laurel Leaf will sponsor a Nativity Scene in Maker’s Alley.  The Laurel Mercantile Co. will show The Polar Express, and HAND+made will host a special Craft & Christmas photo-op. There are more activities and updates to come, so stay tuned!

 

Fill Up, Hang Out, Kick Back

The Pearl Diner – home cooking that you don’t have to cook at home!  Blue plate lunches are offered Tuesday – Friday beginning at 11:00 a.m.  The Pearl Diner is located on the corner of Oak and Magnolia Streets in the former Burton’s Jewelry building.

The Knight Butcher – Lunch is served at Laurel’s only full-service butcher shop daily from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.  Be sure to check their Facebook page to see their daily lunch specials.  Stop by Monday – Saturday between 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. to pick up gourmet meats, delicious homemade fudge, and The Knight Butcher’s famous jerky!

Lee’s Coffee & Tea – Lee’s is a downtown favorite with gourmet coffees, organic teas, soups, paninis, and more.  Enjoy local art while you rest up from your adventures.  Lee’s is open Monday – Thursday from 7:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 7:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m., and Sundays from NOON – 5:00 p.m.

Sweet Somethings Bakery – This family-owned bakery and ice cream shop on Central Avenue offers something to satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth.  Stop by and get your sugar fix any time Monday – Saturday from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Shug’s Cookie Dough and Candy Bar – delectable treats to sit and savor or take them to-go are available at Shug’s!  This gourmet cookie dough bar provides sweet treats for all tastes including traditional childhood favorite candies (Jelly Belly! Peach Rings! M&Ms!) to more refined and grown up treats (truffles galore!) all sold by the pound. Shug’s is open Monday – Thursday 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Friday – Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m., and Sunday 2:00 – 6:00 p.m.

Mimmo’s Ristorante Pizzeria – Laurel’s newest restaurant is open for lunch and dinner!  Enjoy traditional Italian food and wines as well as brick oven pizza.  They’re open Monday – Friday from 11:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 4:00 – 9:00 p.m.

The Loft – The Loft has become a downtown staple and serves dinner Tuesday – Saturday beginning at 5:00 p.m.  Enjoy casual dining with indoor and outdoor seating.  Perfect for groups, children, parties and more.

Slowboat Brewing Company – Slowboat Brewing Company is a brewer owned and family operated micro-brewery in historic downtown Laurel.  Their primary focus is small batch artisan styles, including Farmhouse, Wild, Belgian style, Barrel-aged, experimental ales, and an ever-evolving portfolio of popular American craft beer styles. Stop in for samples, tours, trivia, live music and more! For hours and entertainment lineups, visit them on Facebook or Instagram!

More Ways to Make it Merry

Enjoy a day full of Christmas festivities at Landrum’s Country!  The Christmas Candlelight Tour at Landrum’s Country on December 16th is sure to bring out the holiday cheer in all who attend.

We encourage you to enjoy all the locally owned stores and restaurants, make a memory, start a tradition, and most of all, make your holidays merry and bright!

 

 

The Annual Downtown Laurel Christmas Tree Lighting

If you take a drive around the historic district in the coming weeks, there’s one truth you won’t be able to miss – we love Christmas in Downtown Laurel!

From the incredible light display at Mason Park to the shining Christmas trees decorating each home on 6th Avenue; the wreaths lining the streets of downtown and our favorite display of all, the City of Laurel’s official Christmas tree in Pinehurst Park.  It’s clear that we celebrate our favorite season like no one else, and nothing says Christmas in Laurel more than the official lighting of the city Christmas tree.  We would love for you to celebrate this Christmas tradition with us!

The 2017 Laurel Christmas Tree Lighting

Thursday, November 30th | beginning at 5:30 PM

Sponsored by BancorpSouth, the City of Laurel and Laurel Main Street

5:30 p.m. – First Baptist Church Children’s Choir

5:45 p.m. – Strings Students from Life Church – Alexis Frenette, Director

6:00 p.m. – Laurel High School Concert Choir – Katrina Cox, Director

The official welcome will be delivered by Lew Yoder, president of Laurel Main Street, followed by a special greeting by Mayor Johnny Magee. Soon after, the park will spring to life as Seth Assink, President of BancorpSouth, lights our beloved Downtown Christmas Tree.

After the tree lighting, enjoy a special performance by the students of the Laurel Ballet Academy, under the direction of Elizabeth Sweatt

After the Lighting

Don’t miss the festivities at the Laurel-Jones County Library Open House. Bring the kids to meet Santa, enjoy arts and crafts, and free refreshments.

At 6:40 p.m., The Laurel Little Theatre will show The Polar Express.  This family favorite film is being shown free of charge, but donations are accepted at the door.

Many of our downtown merchants will extend their hours for this event so be sure to stick around, shop awhile, and enjoy a stroll under the lights of beautiful downtown Laurel.

December Downtown 2016

If you take a drive around the historic district in the coming weeks, there’s one truth you won’t be able to miss – we love Christmas in Downtown Laurel!

From the incredible display at Mason Park to shining Christmas trees decorating each home on the Avenues and wreaths lining the streets of downtown and on to our favorite display of all, the official city Christmas tree in Pinehurst Park, we celebrate our favorite season like no one else!

But nothing says Christmas in Laurel more than the official lighting of that cherished tree, and we’d love to have you celebrate this special occasion with us.

christmas-tree-lighting-1

The Lighting of the 2016 Downtown Laurel Christmas Tree

Thursday, December 1st | 5:30 PM Till

Sponsored by BancorpSouth, the City of Laurel and Laurel Main Street

Join us Thursday at 5:30 PM as we begin the festivities.

The official welcome will be delivered by Mallorie Rasberry, president of Laurel Main Street, and Mayor Johnny Magee will give a greeting. Soon after 6:00 the park will spring to life as Ray Palmer, President of BancorpSouth, lights our beloved Downtown Christmas Tree.

At various points in the evening, you’ll enjoy performances by the Highland Baptist Church Choir, Laurel Ballet Academy, Life Church Strings, St. John’s Episcopal Children’s Choir, Laurel High Singers, Maddox Elementary Choir, and Mason Elementary Handbell Choir.

Special refreshments will be on hand provided by BancorpSouth.

What to do after the lighting

After the tree is lit and the performances are completed, don’t miss the festivities at the Laurel-Jones County Library Open House beginning at 6:00. Bring the kids to meet Santa and to get some great holiday treats and hot cocoa. Children will have an opportunity to make a Christmas ornament and get their faces painted.

Grab a brown bag dinner of one of The Knight Butcher’s great burgers between 4-7pm. Enjoy dinner on the patio or take it over to the park for a picnic.

Southern Antiques, Patina’s, The Knight Butcher, Adam Trest Home, JParker, New Look, Seventh Style, The Loft, Lee’s, Sweet Something’s Bakery, Peddler’s Junktion, Office Products, Sweet Daddy’s Pop Shop, and Closet Candy will be extending their hours for the event so be sure to visit them to pick up some unique holiday gifts!

Join us Thursday at 5:30 at Pinehurst Park in Downtown Laurel to kick off the 2016 holiday season!

The Lighting of the Christmas Tree

If you take a drive around the historic district in the coming weeks, there’s one truth you won’t be able to miss – we love Christmas in Downtown Laurel!

From the incredible display at Mason Park to shining Christmas trees decorating each home on 6th Ave and wreaths lining the streets of downtown and on to our favorite display of all, the official city Christmas tree in Pinehurst Park, we celebrate our favorite season like no one else!

But nothing says Christmas in Laurel more than the official lighting of that cherished tree, and we’d love to have you celebrate this special occasion with us.

The Lighting of the 2015 Downtown Laurel Christmas Tree

Thursday, December 3rd | 5:30 PM Till

Sponsored by BancorpSouth, the City of Laurel and Laurel Main Street

Join us Thursday at 5:30 PM as we begin the festivities.

The official welcome will be delivered by Mallorie Rasberry, president of Laurel Main Street, and Mayor Johnny Magee will give a greeting. Soon after 6:00 the park will spring to life as Ray Palmer, President of BancorpSouth, lights our beloved Downtown Christmas Tree.

At various points in the evening, you’ll enjoy performances by the Highland Baptist Church Choir and the Oak Park Elementary School Choir.

Special refreshments will be on hand provided by BancorpSouth.

What to do after the lighting

After the tree is lit and the performances are completed, don’t miss the festivities at the Laurel-Jones County Library Open House from 6 to 7:30pm. Bring the kids to meet Santa and to get some great holiday treats and hot cocoa, and get a FREE balloon from Mr. Silly Socks.

Southern Antiques, Patina’s, The Knight Butcher, All Jazzed Up, and Closet Candy will be extending their hours for the event so be sure to visit them to pick up some unique holiday gifts!

Closet Candy Laurel, MS

Patinas Laurel, MS

The Knight Butcher Laurel, MS

Southern Antiques Laurel, MS

All Jazzed Up Laurel, MS

Join us Thursday at 5:30 at Pinehurst Park in Downtown Laurel to kick off the 2015 holiday season!

3 holiday events you won’t want to miss in Downtown Laurel!

By Bethany Byrd

There is no better time to enjoy the incredible local culture of Laurel, Mississippi than during the holiday season! From the annual Sertoma Christmas Parade and Kiwanis Pancake Day to the beloved LRMA Gala, the holiday festivities held on December 6th this year create the perfect opportunity to enjoy all that Mississippi’s Downtown has to offer!

Sertoma Christmas Parade

2014 Laurel MS Christmas Parade

Every year thousands flock to Mississippi’s largest Christmas parade, held right here in Downtown Laurel, MS on the first Saturday of December. 

This year’s parade – sponsored by the City of Laurel, the Jones County EDA, the Jones County Board of Supervisors, Blakeney Communications, the Laurel Leader-Call, the Chronicle and Sawmill Square Mall – is sure to delight adults and children alike as they take in the sights and sounds of Christmas in this incredible display.

Come out Saturday, December 6th to see floats from local businesses and organizations, local marching bands, emergency vehicles, clubs, and more as they celebrate this year’s theme – “The Carols of Christmas”!

Of course, you won’t want to miss the parade’s two biggest attractions – the arrival of Santa Claus and this year’s celebrity Grand Marshall – Duck Dynasty’s Martin & Godwin!

The Sertoma Christmas Parade is more than just a fun, holiday event – funds raised through parade entries go to further the Sertoma Club’s mission – “to enhance the lives of those who have Speech or Hearing impairments.”

It’s not too late to enter your own float, organization or band! Download the 2014 Sertoma Christmas Parade entry form here.

Kiwanis Pancake Day

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Photo from Laurel Impact

It just wouldn’t be Christmas in Laurel without the annual Kiwanis Pancake Day! Held every year in conjunction with the Sertoma Christmas Parade, Pancake Day is the perfect opportunity to enjoy a fun meal with family and friends before or after the parade while supporting the future of local students.

Each year, folks flock to the Laurel YWCO and First Baptist Church to enjoy hot, buttery pancakes, sausage and coffee prepared by local Kiwanis and Key Club members. The event begins at 6:00 am on December 6 and runs to 2:00. Tickets are $5 if pre-purchased or $6 at the door!

Ticket sales help fund 6 annual scholarships awarded to local students by the Laurel Kiwanis Club to assist in furthering their education.

To purchase tickets, reach out to a local Kiwanis or high-school Key Club member, or pay at the door at either location the day of the event.  

Lauren Rogers Museum of Art Annual Gala

2014 LRMA Gala - Laurel, MS

(Copy provided by LRMA)

The Lauren Rogers Museum of Art Gala, held the first Saturday evening of December, is arguably the area’s most elegant and anticipated event of the year. Mr. and Mrs. Jim Ford will chair this year’s ball, inspired by the French Impressionist movement of the early 20th century.

Set in the galleries of Mississippi’s first art museum and complete with a fabulous dining experience, dancing, and spirited bidding, this event draws approximately 300 guests each year from New Orleans to Seattle.

Original artwork by prominent regional artists, exciting trips, and unique jewelry highlight the Live Auction, while the Silent Auction features dinners, gifts, artwork, weekend getaways, and antiques.

The Gala Preview Party is presented by the LRMA Guild of Docents and Volunteers on the Thursday evening prior to the Gala. The Preview Party provides an opportunity for Gala patrons and Auction donors to familiarize themselves with the items in the Silent Auction and begin bidding on their favorites.

The Museum’s primary fundraising event, the black-tie Gala routinely raises more than $80,000 annually for LRMA programs and exhibitions.

Click here to purchase your tickets for the event.