Help us light up Christmas in Natchez

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 19, 2015

For the past several years, this is about the time I begin looking forward to the day after Thanksgiving, not because I cook for well over 100 every Thanksgiving or that it is Black Friday when all the stores and shops have huge sales, but because it is the official kick-off date of “Christmas in Natchez”.

On Friday, Nov. 27, we are hoping you will gather with family and friends downtown for shopping, eating and enjoying a great event. If you haven’t noticed, the city elves have already started the decorating process and have been working diligently to get garlands, wreaths and lights hung in time.

City shops will be decorated and ready for the season. A turkey gumbo cookoff sponsored this year by Home Bank and Natchez Market will go from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Prizes will be awarded to best overall gumbo (first and second place) best decorated booth (first place only). Visit for more details.

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There will also be a Children’s Fun Fair and a special visit from Santa in the lobby of Home Bank with cookies and hot chocolate to enjoy from 1-5:30. The festivities will end with a ceremony of caroling and the Lighting of the Tree!

Many people have asked me “Why do you think people would want to come to Natchez during the Christmas season?”

For me, this is simple. Christmas is a warm and wonderful holiday and this is why we have so much to offer:

-People love Natchez any time of the year.

-Our average temperature the month of November is characterized by falling daily high temperatures, with daily highs decreasing from 71 degrees to 63 degrees over the course of the month, exceeding 81 degrees or dropping below 51 degrees only one day in ten. (Many visitors consider this tropical.)

-Historic homes that draw thousands of visitors a year put on their best hosting holiday events and tours. One of the highlights is The Towers, which is decorated unlike any house in America for the holidays.

-Gorgeous historic churches with amazing concerts

-Natchez has a charming downtown (which is more rare than we realize) with fabulous shops and restaurants — all individually owned and operated — even a few with live music, again each one uniquely Natchez.

-Never forget our wonderful trails project and the view of the Mississippi River.

However, best of all, we have you, the people of Natchez, who are so hospitable and wonderful to all who visit Natchez. You are the ones that make Natchez worth visiting.

For more information about Christmas in Natchez events, go to

Several years ago, there was a meeting to develop new ideas to help Natchez during the holidays.

Two new residents came up with the plan for everyone to turn their store lights or porch lights on.

Something that simple brings instant warmth to visitors as they enter our town. Personally, I thought it was one of the best ideas that came from the meeting.

I am urging everyone in Natchez to decorate as much as you can for Christmas in Natchez. This could build into something so wonderful for our town. Now, with LED lights and timers, it is not as costly.

Please turn your lights on from dark until whatever time you see fit. Let’s light up Natchez.

Natchez may seem faded to all that have lived here for long periods of time, and after a time, you may not see the beauty outsiders see when they come to visit.

Our visitors, however, see all the preserved architecture, a city set on one of the most scenic parts of the Mississippi River, a downtown that still has some life to it, a variety of restaurants and things to do.

Let’s turn our lights on to show how proud we are of our town.


Regina Charboneau is a member of the Christmas in Natchez Committee