VIDEO: Light Up Elkin shines on variety of activities downtown


By Beanie Taylor - beanietaylor@elkintribune.com



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Emma Jones is so excited to get her picture made with Santa that she’s willing to smother grateful strangers who ask her questions.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Under the direction of Benjamin Bradburn, the Elkin High School Band keeps things festive as citizens wait for Santa to arrive for Light Up Elkin. The band is accepting donations so it can hold a local competition at Dixon Auditorium as well as travel to New York.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Elkin Community Chorus members Bill Davis and B.D. Reece welcome Elkin Mayor Sam Bishop and Serena Martin as well as the rest of the community to the performance on Sunday.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Elkin Parks and Recreation provided games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Elkin Parks and Recreation provides games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Elkin Parks and Recreation provided games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

The Yadkin Valley Community School presents a variety of holiday songs after studying holidays around the world including “Feliz Navidad,” a French Carol and a Hanukkah song.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Students from the Yadkin Valley Community School, which is located in downtown Elkin, range from kindergarten to seventh grade.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Awaiting Santa at Light Up Elkin.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Now that the tree is lit, Santa is headed for his seat to greet Elkin children patently waiting for him.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Santa Clause is ready for the children of Elkin at Light Up Elkin.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Jaxon Kain Coe enjoys his first visit with Santa at 5-months old. Mother Candace Sparks thought Jaxon enjoyed his first Light Up Elkin. “Let’s hope for the same thing next year.”


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Lucas Pasley and Caroline Beverley perform at Wanderlust Studio, just one of several activities taking place during Light Up Elkin.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Director Dan Butner oversees the Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty where crafters and artists shared space with local dance studios Friday evening during Light Up Elkin.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Guests enjoy Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty during Light Up Elkin after visiting vendors at the Farmers Market, which extended the festivities up through Market Street throughout the weekend.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

The Foothills Quilters display their wares and talk about the quilts they make for local shelters which will be distributed later this month.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

The Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty is held during Light Up Elkin. Some items will continue to be available through the Foothills Arts Council during regular business hours.


Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Some children, and adults, could barely contain their excitement as Santa Claus arrived to Light Up Elkin Friday night.

“Lights, lights, lights, lights, lights,” exclaimed 4-year-old Emma Jones between twirls in her tutu and describing the letter she decorated for Santa, who was expected at any moment.

“I had a lot of Care Bear stickers on it and then I put stamps on it and then I put sticker stickers all over it,” because apparently regular stickers were just not good enough for the generous man in the red suit.

“This is wonderful. It’s absolutely beautiful,” said Emma’s mother, Jamie. “We actually came last year and had a great time and so we were very excited when we heard they were doing it again.”

A ranger at Stone Mountain State Park, Emma’s father, Jeff, wasn’t concerned about the dark drive at the end of the night because this year is all about Emma for their family.

“I think with her she’s finally starting to really get excited about it,” said Jamie. “That’s a really big thing.”

It was a really big thing for some of those in Elkin to be able to have the event at the linear park at the historic rock façade.

“Look at this beautiful community park,” said Jennifer White, Light Up Elkin chair and president of the Main Street Advisory Board. “Not too long ago this beautiful granite façade was in jeopardy of deteriorating and even being demolished, but now look at it.”

The Rock Façade Park was not the only accomplishment for Elkin.

“The downtown outdoor WiFi project was finally completed with all the downtown signals now installed made possible by grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission,” said White, as well as the electric car charging stations due to a grant from Duke Energy.

“This past year has been an exciting year in downtown Elkin,” said Mayor Sam Bishop, noting changes that included 11 new or expanded businesses and four historic buildings that have been purchased. “Fiddle’s Pub and Southern on Main have brought live music back to downtown Elkin and additionally Wanderlust Art Studio has live music. A lot of exciting things happening here.”

Bishop also assured the crowd that The Reeves Theater will be open before Christmas.

“They’re going to have some great events over the Christmas holidays and also on New Year’s Eve,” he said.

Part of the motivation behind the excitement has been the Explore Elkin initiative, according to Bishop.

“In January, I appointed a special committee to make Elkin a weekend destination and downtown arts and entertainment hub. Through the efforts of Commissioner Jeff Eidson and Explore Elkin, it is happening,” said Bishop.

“We’ve gone from a manufacturing base to a hospitality base, and that’s what we’re going to be doing here in Elkin, and it’s folks like you who are making it happen.”

It’s also events like Light Up Elkin, which changed from a one-night event to extend throughout the weekend, as well as the town.

In addition to photos with Santa and hot cider from the Yadkin Valley Community School at the Rock Façade Park, the town of Elkin Parks and Recreation sponsored a kids zone where children could test such sporting skills as throwing a football, playing tennis and scoring soccer goals.

At the far end of Main Street, local dance studios joined together for a performance where they shared Coley Hall at The Liberty with the Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market, which, like the vendors at the Farmers Market, continued throughout the weekend.

“Light Up Night is a time for our community to celebrate the start of the holiday season together in downtown Elkin,” said White, who at the end of the successful evening, like many who make Christmas for others, glowed with a relief brighter than the Christmas Tree lights.

Beanie Taylor can be reached at 336-258-4058 or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TBeanieTaylor.

Emma Jones is so excited to get her picture made with Santa that she’s willing to smother grateful strangers who ask her questions.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-2-.jpgEmma Jones is so excited to get her picture made with Santa that she’s willing to smother grateful strangers who ask her questions. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Under the direction of Benjamin Bradburn, the Elkin High School Band keeps things festive as citizens wait for Santa to arrive for Light Up Elkin. The band is accepting donations so it can hold a local competition at Dixon Auditorium as well as travel to New York.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-3-.jpgUnder the direction of Benjamin Bradburn, the Elkin High School Band keeps things festive as citizens wait for Santa to arrive for Light Up Elkin. The band is accepting donations so it can hold a local competition at Dixon Auditorium as well as travel to New York. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Elkin Community Chorus members Bill Davis and B.D. Reece welcome Elkin Mayor Sam Bishop and Serena Martin as well as the rest of the community to the performance on Sunday.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-4-.jpgElkin Community Chorus members Bill Davis and B.D. Reece welcome Elkin Mayor Sam Bishop and Serena Martin as well as the rest of the community to the performance on Sunday. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Elkin Parks and Recreation provided games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-7-.jpgElkin Parks and Recreation provided games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Elkin Parks and Recreation provides games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-9-.jpgElkin Parks and Recreation provides games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Elkin Parks and Recreation provided games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-10-.jpgElkin Parks and Recreation provided games and activities during Light Up Elkin Friday night. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

The Yadkin Valley Community School presents a variety of holiday songs after studying holidays around the world including “Feliz Navidad,” a French Carol and a Hanukkah song.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-12-.jpgThe Yadkin Valley Community School presents a variety of holiday songs after studying holidays around the world including “Feliz Navidad,” a French Carol and a Hanukkah song. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Students from the Yadkin Valley Community School, which is located in downtown Elkin, range from kindergarten to seventh grade.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-13-.jpgStudents from the Yadkin Valley Community School, which is located in downtown Elkin, range from kindergarten to seventh grade. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Awaiting Santa at Light Up Elkin.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-14-.jpgAwaiting Santa at Light Up Elkin.Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Now that the tree is lit, Santa is headed for his seat to greet Elkin children patently waiting for him.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-15-.jpgNow that the tree is lit, Santa is headed for his seat to greet Elkin children patently waiting for him. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Santa Clause is ready for the children of Elkin at Light Up Elkin.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-16-.jpgSanta Clause is ready for the children of Elkin at Light Up Elkin.Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Jaxon Kain Coe enjoys his first visit with Santa at 5-months old. Mother Candace Sparks thought Jaxon enjoyed his first Light Up Elkin. “Let’s hope for the same thing next year.”
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-17-.jpgJaxon Kain Coe enjoys his first visit with Santa at 5-months old. Mother Candace Sparks thought Jaxon enjoyed his first Light Up Elkin. “Let’s hope for the same thing next year.” Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Lucas Pasley and Caroline Beverley perform at Wanderlust Studio, just one of several activities taking place during Light Up Elkin.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-18-.jpgLucas Pasley and Caroline Beverley perform at Wanderlust Studio, just one of several activities taking place during Light Up Elkin. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Director Dan Butner oversees the Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty where crafters and artists shared space with local dance studios Friday evening during Light Up Elkin.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-19-.jpgDirector Dan Butner oversees the Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty where crafters and artists shared space with local dance studios Friday evening during Light Up Elkin. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

Guests enjoy Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty during Light Up Elkin after visiting vendors at the Farmers Market, which extended the festivities up through Market Street throughout the weekend.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-20-.jpgGuests enjoy Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty during Light Up Elkin after visiting vendors at the Farmers Market, which extended the festivities up through Market Street throughout the weekend. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

The Foothills Quilters display their wares and talk about the quilts they make for local shelters which will be distributed later this month.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-21-.jpgThe Foothills Quilters display their wares and talk about the quilts they make for local shelters which will be distributed later this month. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

The Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty is held during Light Up Elkin. Some items will continue to be available through the Foothills Arts Council during regular business hours.
http://www.elkintribune.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/web1_LightUp2017-22-.jpgThe Foothills Holiday Craft and Gift Market at Coley Hall in The Liberty is held during Light Up Elkin. Some items will continue to be available through the Foothills Arts Council during regular business hours. Beanie Taylor | The Tribune

By Beanie Taylor

beanietaylor@elkintribune.com

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