Our 2019 Holiday Gift Guide features the best local picks for perfect presents.
An inspiring, beautiful tablescape for your Friendsgiving doesn’t need to be a lot of work.
For residents of Stillwater and surrounding communities, there’s no place like home for the holidays. Throughout the month of December, Stillwater’s downtown area will be lit up with holiday decorations to create a sparkling backdrop for festive events and activities for people of all ages.
Have you ever reached the point in the flurry of holiday gift shopping where you start to feel overwhelmed, wishing you could stay in the comfort of your home and make those last few gifts? Or do you ever have difficulty finding a gift that has a personal touch? If so, shops in the St. Croix Valley have a multitude of ideas for you to make a gift (or more) by hand. As many do-it-yourselfers (DIYers) know, making the perfect gift can be as much fun as giving it to someone you care about.
The holidays are filled with traditions, and for many, that includes an annual trek to a Christmas tree farm. One local favorite is Krueger’s Christmas Tree farm in Lake Elmo. Every year, Neil and Deb Krueger, with a host of family and friends, don their red coats and bring on the cheer to help usher in the season.
Beautifully decorated for the holidays, the Aurora Staples Inn in Stillwater will open its doors to guests during a series of three open-house events. On the Sundays leading up to Christmas, the Victorian bed and breakfast will provide tours of all the main areas and guest rooms.
It’s said that Santa Claus has a twinkle in his eye, but he’ll be no match for the lights on display at this year’s Twinkle Parade in Stillwater. The annual parade, organized by the Main Street Stillwater Independent Business Alliance (IBA) and also sponsored by the Stillwater/Oak Park Heights Convention and Visitors Bureau, will kick off outside the Dock Café. The event will include hot cocoa, coffee and cookies, along with a performance by the Teddy Bear Band.
Christmas is a year-round celebration at the Käthe Wohlfahrt store in downtown Stillwater. The shop is home to a wide selection of traditional handcrafted items from Germany including nutcrackers, incense smokers, pyramids, wooden figurines and ornaments. In fact, one wooden ornament was designed exclusively for the Stillwater store and features a hand-painted lift bridge and paddleboat. There are also two glass ornaments, a heart and a suitcase, unique to the Stillwater shop.
It’s all in the name. At the annual Light Up Night celebration in Hudson, all are invited to experience the sparkling start to the season when gorgeous lights will be turned on throughout the town’s downtown streets.
With December snow glistening throughout town and festive Christmas lights and sounds in the streets, Afton will once again welcome the public to its celebrated Village Holiday weekend. The event will take place Dec. 4–5 and will include fun for the entire family. Some main attractions this year include a Candlelight Night, where the downtown is given a romantic spin under candlelight with wine tastings, as well as a Family Day celebration featuring games and photos with Santa Claus.