The Oneonta Business Association (OBA) is working closing with the Oneonta Beautification Board (OBB) to make this Christmas lively by decorating and holding special events that everyone can enjoy. Members of the OBA and the OBB are planning several events to make the holidays even merrier.
Currently, members of the OBA and OBB, are “Decking the Halls” by Dec. 1. They are placing clear lights in the crape myrtle trees along First Avenue. They are also decorating all four “Welcome to Oneonta” signs. The signs will be classically decorated with tasteful burgundy velvet bows and green garland.
Christmas in Oneonta is designed to make Oneonta a holiday attraction and shopping destination. There are so many treasures to find in all the Oneonta businesses.
The first event is the Community Christmas Tree Lighting on Thursday, Dec. 1. Everyone is invited to come to the Oneonta Gazebo at 6 p.m. There will be a performance by the Wallace State Singers. Hot chocolate and coffee will be served courtesy of Miller’s Soda Shoppe to keep your hands and spirits warm.
The next idea is to extend business hours for the holidays. On Dec. 1, 8, 15 and 22, all participating businesses will stay open until 7 p.m. Some stores regularly close as early as 4 p.m., and many of us just don’t have the time to get to all the stores we want. The extended business hours will give all shoppers more time at the stores.
The OBA is also aligning the Saturday shopping hours. On Dec. 3, 10, 17 and 24 stores will be open from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. It is understood that not all stores will be open on Dec. 24. It’s Christmas Eve, and many of the participating store owners may have prior family engagements.
The Fourth Annual Holiday Decorating Contest will also take place. The deadline to enter is Nov. 30 and all decorations must be up and lit by Dec. 1. This contest is sponsored by the OBA. There is no entry fee, but there are great possible rewards. First place wins $500, second place wins $250, and third place wins $100. There will also be three honorable mentions named. Each business that places will receive a customized display plaque. Winners will be announced on Saturday, Dec. 10, at noon in front of Miller’s Soda Shoppe. The judges have no Blount County ties so that the judging is fair and honest. Contest rules and entry forms are available at www.oneontabusinessassociation.com or you can pick one up from Paul Allred at Treasures on Main Mall.
OBA member Patti Moss Williams shared, “Some of our past decorating contest judges have asked, ‘Well, where are all the (Christmas) lights?’. They expected that Oneonta would be decked out as a Christmas showplace. Well, the OBA’s efforts are to achieve that for our beautiful hometown and hopefully, boost the economy as a result.”
Businesses that are registered so far for the decorating contest include Artsy One Designs, Blount County Children’s Center, Blount County Memorial Museum, Blount County Sav-a-life, Elegant Touch, Hammer’s Department Store, Interior by Design Offices, Kim Lee State Farm Insurance, Main Street Coffee, Main Street Family Urgent Care, Miller’s Soda Shoppe, The Pink Porch Market, Red Ribbon Décor and More, Silhouette Salon, Such Gear, TLC Nursing Center, Treasures on Main, Wallace State Community College- Oneonta, Weathers Ace Hardware, and Yellowhammer Photography.
Finally, there will be a Christmas Open House on Saturday, Dec. 10, from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Stores will serve light refreshments and give away door prizes and Santa Claus will be at Southern Exposure Photography to take photos with the children.
Stores participating in the Christmas Open Houses are Artsy One Designs, Cargile Jewelers, Cosa Bella Boutique, Hammer’s Department Store, Main Street Coffee, Memories Antiques & Gifts, Merle Norman Cosmetics, Miller Soda Shoppe, Our This and That Boutique Shoppe, Pink Porch Market, Red Ribbon Décor and More, Shirley’s Fine Jewelry, Such Gear, and Treasures on Main Mall. Other stores may be added later.
The Oneonta Business Association and the Oneonta Beautification Board are working hard to make this Christmas special for everyone. They encourage you to shop locally, and put money back into the businesses we are so fortunate to have. It’s truly going to be a small-town Christmas.