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Christmas spirit fills the city

NATCHEZ — From ice-skating to a parade and fireworks, Miss-Lou Christmas lovers will have plenty to do this holiday season in Natchez.

The Christmas in Natchez Committee and other groups have holiday events planned from Thanksgiving all the way until Santa’s arrival.

Committee member Debbie Hudson said this year’s events have something for everyone.

“The holiday spirit is here, and the weekends are filled with things for people to do,” she said.

Here are some of the upcoming events.

-The Annie Moses Band will play a free concert sponsored by the American Queen Steamboat Company on the bluff from 2 p.m. until 3:30 p.m. Thursday.

-The annual turkey gumbo cook-off is from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. Friday. Six tasting tickets are $10. To register a cooking team, e-mail reginacharboneau@yahoo.com. Set up is at 1 p.m., and tasting begins at 5 p.m.

-The Main Street Christmas tree will come to life at 7 p.m. Friday at the tree-lighting ceremony.

-The Longwood Jazz Dinner in the Round will be from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Saturday at Longwood. The dinner will feature a cocktail and hors d’oeuvres hour with a silent auction, followed by a seated chateaubriand dinner with win, and jazz played by the Larry Panella Quartet.

For tickets and information call Natchez Pilgrimage Tours at 601-446-6631. Tickets are $85 per person or $150 for a couple.

-A choir performance will be held at 5:30 p.m. every Thursday starting Nov. 29 until Christmas at the Eola Hotel.

-Ballet Magnificat will present “Before His Throne Boldly” at 7 p.m. Nov. 30 at the Margaret Martin Performing Arts Center.

-Trinity’s Holiday Bazaar and Merry Market will be from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Dec. 1 at the Natchez Convention Center.

-The Christmas parade will roll at 6 p.m. Dec. 1 and be followed by fireworks.

-The Natchez Festival of Music will present “Christmas Cabaret” at 7 p.m. Dec. 14 at the Natchez City Auditorium.

-An ice-skating rink, jumping castles, a train and a petting zoo will be set up on the bluff from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Dec. 14. Tickets are $15.

For a full calendar of events, visit christmasinnatchez.com.

The impact of the Christmas events goes beyond just having fun, though, Hudson said.

“If people are staying here and spending their money here, then they’re not spending it anywhere else,” she said.