CHRISTMAS IN JULY: Fundraiser for decorations to kickstart holiday spirit

Published 4:00 pm Saturday, July 9, 2022

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NATCHEZ — Christmas in Natchez is hosting its annual Christmas in July fundraising event Thursday, July 28, at Dunleith.

The fundraiser helps bring holiday decorations and festivities to the Natchez community. It starts at 5:30 p.m. on July 28 and lasts until 7:30 p.m.

“This is how we are able to do any kind of Christmas decorations in the city,” said Lynsey Smith Gilbert, a member of the non-profit Christmas in Natchez. “We can only do this through the communities support of this fundraiser. With the Hallmark films made here last year, we had all of this momentum that helped us put a great display on the bluff. It’s a great photo opportunity that people can enjoy for years to come.”

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Gilbert said proceeds from last year also allowed Christmas in Natchez to rent an animated nursery rhyme Christmas display for Memorial Park. The makeup of this display is a surprise that will be revealed on the grounds of Dunleith the night of the fundraiser, she said.

Gilbert thanked Tim Fitzpatrick, who worked on the Hallmark film “Every Time a Bell Rings” that was filmed in Natchez last year, for helping them get the decorations.

“He fell in love with Natchez while he was here working on the film and is now helping us get these decorations,” she said.

Tickets to the Christmas in July fundraiser are $50 each, which includes a social night with a sneak peek of the display, hors devours, two specialty cocktails and a cash bar.

Tickets can be purchased online at or at the door, Gilbert said.

She added there will also be a cute “Save the Date” display for upcoming Christmas events.

The annual Christmas Tree Lighting, which includes a “winter wonderland” for kids in the heart of downtown Natchez, is scheduled for Nov. 26. This holiday kickoff event is followed by the annual Christmas parade on Dec. 3, caroling in the park and more.

“Come out to Dunleith and support a good cause,” Gilbert said.