There’s nothing like Christmas in a small town. Orillia, Collingwood, and Creemore all have designated heritage main streets and during the holiday season, the beauty of their downtown area comes alive with decorations and twinkling lights. Each has its own holiday traditions and celebrations that bring the whole town together to spread joy and good cheer.
Downtown Orillia on Mississaga Street
Downtown Orillia’s charming streetscape transforms during the holiday season. All the downtown businesses come together to create a cheerful experience for all who visit. Beautiful window displays can be found at most businesses, lights are strung along Mississaga Street with Christmas bows.
This year the Downtown Management Board has added some holiday light décor pieces to each block in the downtown area. This will provide a great photo opportunity and something the whole city and visitors can get involved in.
Light Up Orillia 2021 is an initiative organized by downtown Orillia to encourage businesses to ramp up displays and they can also register to be on the light tour. Participating businesses will be included in the Tripvia tours app where the locations of each point of interest can be found. The hope of this initiative is to bring locals and visitors alike out to explore and support the downtown area. This is also a contest so the business with the best display will win a prize.
In addition, Downtown Orillia has organized a Christmas market that happens every Friday night in December that will showcase a variety of local vendors, and participating businesses downtown that will stay open later for shopping.
Creemore’s Main Street
The Village of Creemore really knows how to do Christmas. As you drive into town you will see that almost all the houses are decorated for the season. Wreaths are hung on every door and lights have been strung on the trees in gardens.
Each, year the whole town comes together for the annual Christmas Tree lighting organized by the Tree Society of Creemore. Children can bring homemade ornaments to place on the tree, providing a sense of community and togetherness. There’s singing, activities for the whole family, and delicious treats and beverages to enjoy provided by local downtown cafes.
Creemore’s main street is a quaint area filled with unique local businesses along the tree-lined Mill Street. Wrapped around each tree are a pair of handmade mittens and a scarf that has been sewn by volunteers who own businesses in Creemore. Beautiful window displays have been created in the windows by each business. Garland is used to trimming the doors and poles along the street. Residents you can see are excited about the holiday season and make shopping local a priority as the shops are busy.
The Township of Clearview has also organized a self-guided light display tour called Rural Lights and Winter Nights that happens throughout the whole township. This event was organized to engage residents and visitors to get out and explore Clearview. There are two light displays that have been set up in Creemore. You can find one located at Mad River Park in the main core and the other at the Avening Community Centre.
Downtown Collingwood on Hurontario Street
Finally, Downtown Collingwood will make you feel like you’re in the scene of a Christmas movie. There is plenty of holiday activities and beautiful décor to enjoy along Hurontario Street. Downtown is dressed in beautiful holiday lights and light installations, along with some festive selfie stations to grab that picture-perfect post.
Every Friday night in December there is a Collingwood Christmas Market that celebrates the dining and shopping Downtown Collingwood has to offer. Businesses located along the main strip will stay open later for shopping.
As you stroll through the streets you will be able to take in some amazing entertainment from local talent like hula hoppers, stilt walkers, and jugglers. The Fleetwood Dance Centre and 5678 Dance will be performing in the windows of downtown shops. It truly is a unique experience that is sure to bring a smile to your face and get you in the Christmas spirit. This year they have also added a concert series held at the Simcoe Street Theatre. The concert series features local artists, and the town is very excited to welcome people back to the theatre.
Enjoy some festive activities over the holidays with your family and friends by visiting these heritage main streets. Experience beautiful displays, decorations, local entertainment, and most important the joy that’s spread through the town.
-The BDAR Team