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Local shopping promoted: Santa, trolley, DJ, pop-up shops part of event

This weekend, the annual Ironton aLive Small Business Saturday and Christmas festivities will be a little different.

Besides the annual visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus, there will be a DJ, pop-up shops in the old Kresge building and for those sports fans who don’t want to miss it, the Ohio State/Michigan game on a big screen TV.

“Ironton aLive board member Amanda Cleary is chairperson for Small Business Saturday this year, Amanda and her committee is kicking it up a notch and you don’t want to miss it,” said Ironton aLive director Sam Heighton. “We want to put more excitement in it and get people downtown.”

The Santa Trolley with Santa aboard will arrive at 10 a.m. at the Transit Center on Second Street, adjacent to the Iron Town Coffee Lab. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be at the Transit Center until 2 p.m. so kids of all ages will be able to get their pictures taken with them.

After the photo op, you can do some cooking decorating at the center with members of Ironton in Bloom.

“You can pick up your passport cards at the Transit Center for a chance to win Ironton Bucks,” Heighton said. Once a passport is picked up, people can take them to the various stores on it and once it is completed, the passport is entered into a contest with a chance to get some of the $700 in Ironton bucks that can be used at participating Ironton stores. The top prize is $300.

The Ironton Bucks winners will be announced Dec. 14 during the Christmas Choir Concert, which starts at 6:30 p.m. at the Ironton City Center.

And this year a lot of the action will be towards the Rotary Fountain side of downtown Ironton.

Boy Scout Troop 106 will be set up at by the fountain from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. to prepare s’mores for people and there will be a DJ spinning Christmas songs to create a festive atmosphere.

The recently refurbished Kresge building, right across Center Street from the fountain, will be the site of dozens of pop-up shops from 10 a.m.–6 p.m.

“We have around 40 vendors,” Cleary said. “We’re very excited, we have a lot of artists and artisan vendors, some direct sales companies and some community organizations. We also have a church coming to do gift wrapping as a fundraiser. There will be a lot of things happening in that space.”

Cleary said that many of the downtown businesses will have events in their stores as well.

And for those who are good at searching, Ginger Gillenwater, Ironton aLive chairperson, will be hiding the elf around town and the lucky person that finds it can win gifts and Ironton Bucks.

And for the sports fans who want to be with their families but still want to catch the big Ohio State versus Michigan game, the Party Place at 214 S. Third St. will have a big 92” screen television set up.

“It will be fantastic to have everyone come and fill the streets of downtown Ironton and support our local businesses,” Cleary said.

Small Business Saturday was started in 2010 by American Express as a way to promote small, local businesses, and always falls on the last Saturday of November after Black Friday and before Cyber Monday.