Merry Little Downtown Christmas

COVID-19 may be leaving it’s impression on the Merry Little Downtown Christmas celebration, but the event is still going on with safety measures in mind.

Winchester Downtown Program Executive Director Lauren Martin said that the annual Merry Little Downtown Christmas celebration will be somewhat different in 2020.

“The event isn’t really cancelled, it’s mostly just shifting to a more open space,” she said, referring to how the giveaways to children will take place at the old Franklin County High School football field on Dinah Shore Boulevard.

“The businesses are not closed,” Martin said. “We just wanted to do the right thing where crowds are concerned, so there will not be quite as many activities. The important thing here is that AM Rotary and Kiwanis are still able to move forward with their efforts for the children.”

Those two service organizations will be giving away bicycles, basketballs, soccer balls and volleyballs in a combined effort this year to children who register on Saturday, Dec. 12, at the stadium from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

In case of inclement weather, the event will be shifted to the Farmers Market Pavilion adjacent to the stadium.

Martin said that residents and visitors are encouraged to holiday shop in the Downtown area, and businesses will be participating in special prize drawings to promote the Christmas spirit.

The Franklin County A.M. Rotary’s annual Free Pancake Breakfast, also held previously on the same date coinciding with Merry Little Downtown Christmas, has been postponed until 2021 for safety and COVID-19 related reasons.