Hundreds of people packed into Old Town Bay St. Louis on Saturday for the third annual Christmas in the Bay parade and tree lighting ceremony.
“This is just a great turn-out,” Mayor Mike Favre said during the event. “You couldn’t ask for better.”
Favre said his administration began the event as a way to help kick-start the holiday season in Bay St. Louis and encourage Hancock County residents to shop locally.
After the parade Saturday, hundreds gathered in front of the historic Hancock County Courthouse on Main Street for the Christmas tree-lighting ceremony — complete with foam “snow” — and an opportunity for the children to visit with Santa.
Santa will be back in the Bay this weekend for several other events — the Hancock County Tourism Bureau will present its 13th annual Christmas parade in Bay St. Louis this Saturday, Dec. 4, beginning at 11 a.m.
The parade will begin on Blaize Ave., travel to Toulme St., to Main St., to Beach Blvd., to Union, ending at the Depot District with the annual Snowflakes and Sugarplums Festival.
The festival will continue through 3 p.m. Saturday, and Santa will be on hand to visit with the children. For more, call 228-463-9222 or visit www.playonthebay.org.
For parade information, call Gayle Adams at 985-778-3809.
At 1 p.m. on Saturday, the annual Pearling Christmas Parade is scheduled to begin at the old Charles B. Murphy Elementary School, rolling up White’s Road to Seventh Ave., down to Hwy. 90, down Hwy. 604, and ending at the Pearlington Community Center. For more, call 228-671-9576 or 228-671-6272.
Beginning at 5 p.m. on Saturday, the city of Waveland will host “Elf” Movie Night and its Tree Lighting ceremony. Everyone is invited to wear their holiday pajamas, bring a cozy blanket and lawn chairs and help light the Christmas tree. Refreshments will be provided. The event will take place at the Waveland Town Green, 345 Coleman Ave. Call 601-590-2791 for more.
Other upcoming holiday activities include:
• From 5-7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 2, Old Town merchants will host the annual Nativity Walk, with luminaries, Nativity displays along Main Street and Christmas music.
• The Bay Waveland Yacht Club Ladies Auxiliary will host its annual Christmas Bazaar on Friday, Dec. 3 from 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; and Saturday, Dec. 4, from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. For more, call 228-467-4592 or visit www.bwyc.org.
• Also on Saturday, Dec. 4, Dan B’s Restaurant at 109 S. Beach Blvd. in Bay St. Louis will host Breakfast with Santa from 8 -10:30 a.m.
• From Sunday, Dec. 5 through Monday, Dec. 13, the Hancock County Library System will host its annual Holiday Tree Gala and Scavenger Hunt, with Christmas trees decorated by local business and organizations at each of the library branches. The scavenger hunt will include prizes for children and adults, and you can pick up a stamp card at any one of the five branches during regular business hours, then visit each branch at any time to find the hidden objects. For more call 228-467-5282.
• On Friday, Dec. 10, McLeod Park will host “Elves in the Park” from 6-8 p.m., with a tree lighting ceremony, a visit from Santa and cookies and hot chocolate. The event is sponsored by the Hancock County Community Committee. During the event, M.A.P. will present the Christmas Play, “Everyone’s Christmas Story,” by Kara Wilkins, beginning at 7 p.m.
• The annual Kiln Fire Truck Parade I scheduled to roll on Saturday, Dec. 11, beginning at noon. Fire trucks will parade through the Kiln on the way to meet Santa, starting at Bobinger Rd. and Old Kiln Picayune Rd., heading to Old Joe Moran Rd., where it turns left and heads to Cuevas Rd, crosses on to Hwy. 43 and heads to the storm shelter. Santa will be at the shelter to meet with the children. The public is invited to participate. To enter a float, the cost is $50, or $20 for four-wheelers or side-by-sides. Call 228-493-5666.
• On Saturday, Dec. 11, the Waveland Civic Association will host a Christmas parade beginning at 5:30 p.m. The parade will start at the lighthouse, to Lafitte, to Central, to Coleman, and end at the Town Green. Golf carts, Jeeps and antique cars welcome. There is a $25 registration fee. The application to enter will be on the WCA Facebook page. For more, contact AJ Andres at 228-493-3861 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
• First Baptist Church on Main Street in Bay St. Louis will host its annual Life Nativity recreation beginning at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 11.
• On Wednesday, Dec. 15, M.A.P. will present “Everyone’s Favorite Christmas Story” by Kara Wilkins at St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Diamondhead, starting at 6:30 p.m. On Sunday, Dec. 19, M.A.P. will present the play at St. Rose de Lima Church on Necaise Ave. in Bay St. Louis, beginning at 2 p.m.
• On Friday, Dec. 31, the annual New Year’s Eve Oyster Drop is scheduled at 200 N. Beach Blvd. There will also be a bonfire and fireworks, with live music by the Dave Mayley Band. For more, visit Facebook at #ChristmasInTheBay.