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Small Town Christmas kicks off holidays in Cave Spring

Organizers for this year’s Small Town Christmas in the Country said Thursday they are preparing for their largest arts-and-craft holiday sale in Rolater Park yet.

Susan Childers, who arranges the event, said 125 vendors already have been lined up for the Dec. 6 and 7 sale, and she expects more to sign up in the next two weeks.

“It’s has just grown tremendously,” said Childers. “The response has been overwhelming. I’ve actually had to turn away vendors so that we don’t have duplications of items, but we have an amazing variety of new vendors and ones from the past are coming back as well.”

At Christmas in the Country, local and out-of-town artists will sell their wares, including canned goods, birdhouses, glassware and more, in the park and its pavilions. Craftspeople also will set up booths on both floors of the Hearn Academy, said Childers.

Free cider and coffee will be available along with live entertainment providing a Christmas ambiance with carols and seasonal tunes. Food vendors will offer everything from soups and sandwiches, to barbecue, pizza and sweet snacks.

The indoor-outdoor sale will be from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. both days. Admission and parking are free.

“It’s a great place to buy great gifts and support local artists and craftsmen, and to really just have a good time,” Childers said.

A children’s section will also be set up with inflatables, pony rides, a professional clown with balloon art, face painting and more.

The event started out as a women’s bazaar at Childers’ house but “we totally outgrew it,” she said.

Several other events coincide with the festival.

Girl Scouts from Troop 26711 dressed as elves will give tours of the Rolater Park cave, which has been decorated for the holidays. The Dec. 6 and 7 tours are $2.

Rehoboth Baptist Church will have a live nativity scene — with real animals — both days.

And the Santa Sprint 5K race and health walk starts at 8:30 a.m. on Dec. 7. Registration — which is $25 for the run and $20 for the walk — can be done online at Active.com or at the gate on the day of the race.

Proceeds benefit the International Rett Syndrome Foundation. Rett Syndrome is a rare neurological disorder that leads to developmental reversals.

Wrapping up holiday festivities, Cave Spring will hold its the annual Christmas Parade on Dec. 13 at 6 p.m.