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Let's go downtown: Nov. 22

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 On Friday, folks will have another reason to go downtown.  

LaFollette merchants and community organizers are planning an all-day “open house” Nov. 22, complete with music, food, discounts, giveaways, a living nativity scene, Christmas caroling and a tree-lighting ceremony. 

Santa Claus is even expected to make an appearance or two. 

Beginning at 10 a.m., the downtown LaFollette corridors of Central, Tennessee and Indiana avenues will come alive as shoppers take advantage of special discounts at select stores, including Bowman Jewelers. The 80-year-old business will offer a 30-50 percent discount on select items and allow customers to layaway items for the holiday season, during the one-day special.  

Terry’s Pharmacy will offer free food and door prizes throughout the day and hold a drawing for a free TV. Smith’s Hardware will offer popcorn and refreshments. Customers to the store will also  receive a free quart of paint with an additional purchase. Katie’s Carryout & Catering — voted Best Burger by LaFollette Press readers this year — will extend its diner’s hours and host live music with Greg Marlow and Wayne Kitts from 6 to 8 p.m. Katie’s will also host two drawings throughout the evening. 

Santa Claus is expected to make at least two showings throughout the day. 

From 2 to 5 p.m. folks may stop by Annie’s Impressions and Lace to Pearls, 108 S. Indiana Ave, to meet the jolly man of the season. Free photos with Santa will be offered there by A Moment in Time photography. 

If you miss Santa there, he will be at Bowman Jewelers, 126 E. Central Ave. from 5 to 7 p.m. Bring your own camera for a photo opportunity — or purchase a picture  keepsake with the man in red for $10. 

At 6 p.m., Mayor Mike Stanfield will illuminate the city Christmas tree at  Freeman Park on the corner of First Street and Central Avenue.  

I’m crossing my fingers for fair weather, but of course there will be free hot chocolate to keep you warm if we hit another cold spell. 

So please join the community as we kick off the holiday season! 

Let’s go downtown, folks!

 — Brent Schanding, LaFollette Press editor

Editor's note: Check the FEATURES section of the Nov. 21 edition for stories about participating merchants in this year's event.