The Steele County Historical Society (SCHS) invites all to participate in Christmas in the Village on Friday, November 30 from 4:30-8:00 PM and Saturday, December 1 from 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM at the Steele County Historical Society campus—Village of Yesteryear, 1448 Austin Road, Owatonna and the History Center, 1700 Austin Road. The Holiday Home Tour will be held December 2, noon to 5:00 PM.
Sponsored by Federated Insurance, Christmas in the Village, an historic holiday spectacular, offers something for the entire family. A highlight of the event is the lavishly decorated Dunnell House. The historic mansion rooms will be decorated by local designers, decorators and community groups. Enjoy holiday music in the parlor and visit with Santa in the ladies parlor. Each room in the newly renovated Dunnell House will be decorated and guests are sure to find inspiration at every turn. Featured decorators this year include: Cedar Framing and Finds, Prairie Home, Janet Smith, Mike and Brenda Jensen, Janet Miller and Darlene Noble, Cedar Floral, First Lutheran Church of Blooming Prairie, Job’s Daughters, Bev Falteysek and Amy Bauer, Cash Wise Floral, and ReMax Venture.
Friday night performers in the Dunnell House include: Jean Stewart, Jacob and John Pfeifer, Rachel and Breanna Ulrich, and Lyn Andrews. Saturday performers in the Dunnell House include: Mike Tillmann, Gloria Kenow, and Nancy Vaillancourt.
The Saco Church, decorated for the holiday by Stargazer Designs, will also feature local talent. Performing Friday evening is Bob Blankers and Todd Uptadel, on Saturday you will be entertained by Just Kidding Quartet and Pat Meisel and a Violin Quartet will perform throughout the event.
The luminary lit Village of Yesteryear will come alive on Friday, November 30, at 4:30. Be sure to stop by and visit Pete the Printer in the SCHS Print Shop. There you can write Santa your very own letter to Santa and then drop it in the North Pole Post Office at the General Store or hand deliver it to Santa in the Dunnell House. While in the General Store, be sure to visit the Village Bakers and decorate a cookie. In the District 14 Schoolhouse and the History Center, decorated by School Age Care, children can participate in hands-on craft activities.
Over the river and through the woods, well to the History Center anyway, horse-drawn wagon rides will take you from the idyllic Village setting to the History Center and back.
A Soup Supper will be held Friday, 4:30-6:30PM, in the History Center. This homemade meal is sure to warm you up on a cold winters day! Your choice of wild rice soup or chili, bread, a beverage, and a holiday cookie complete the meal. Soup will be available for purchase on Saturday during lunch. Tickets are available at the History Center in advance or at the door. The cost is $8 for adults and children over 12. Hot dogs will also be available for purchase.
While you’re at the History Center, you can purchase holiday treats at the Fancy Cookie Sale, enjoy a delicious cup of coffee and a cookie, visit the County Junction, A Gift Shop in Time, for locally crafted specialty gift items or peruse the wide range of locally authored books. You are sure to find something unique for everyone on your holiday shopping list!
The Jolly One enjoys visits from all boys and girls while he visits the Dunnell House. Experience the warmth and magic that surrounds Santa in this beautifully decorated home. Relive old memories and make new ones that will last a lifetime.
The History Center will feature live music Friday and Saturday. On Friday evening you will be entertained by VALID featuring Dave Williams and Val Seath, a viola quartet, Hans Hohrman, the First Lutheran Church of Blooming Prairie choir, the Golden Tones, and the Ellendale United Methodist Church choir.
The holiday fun continues on Sunday, December 2 when Berkshire Hathaway brings you the SCHS Holiday Home Tour from Noon-5:00 PM. The following Owatonna homes will be featured: Jan Mittelstadt Tippett, 235 Oakwood Lane, Owatonna; Todd and Mary Boettger, 2045 3rd Avenue NE, Owatonna; James and Carissa Smith, 1810 Mineral Springs Parkway, Owatonna; Dunnell House and the Saco Church, Village of Yesteryear, 1448 Austin Road, Owatonna; Tim and Carmen Von Ruden & Greg and Ardis Grossbach, 700 SE 94th Avenue, Claremont; and Rice Lake Church, 10389 585th Street, Claremont. Ticket price is $15 and can be purchased at the Steele County Historical Society, Tri M Graphics, and Kottke Jewelers in Owatonna, and at each of the homes the day of the tour. Tickets include the map to the homes. You can tour as many or as few as you like, on your schedule.
Christmas in the Village is one of the events of Owatonna’s “Hometown Holiday” weekend. For more information about other activities in Owatonna, please check the Owatonna Chamber of Commerce and Tourism website at: visitowatonna.org.
Admission to the Village and History Center on Friday and Saturday is free. Some events may have fees. Exhibits currently in the History Center are “Over Here, Over There: The Great War” and “Toys and Play, 1970 to Today.”
All proceeds from Christmas in the Village benefit the Steele County Historical Society hands-on educational programming and exhibitions. For more information about Christmas in the Village or SCHS please call 507/451-1420.