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Holiday in City events today

Springfield festival includes fireworks, tree lighting and parade.

Temperatures are expected to rise today as thousands of people are expected to attend the 15th annual Holiday in The City downtown.

The forecast calls for temperatures to hover at about when downtown festivities kickoff at noon with the opening of Santa Land and the start of vendors, carolers, carousel rides, entertainment and carriage rides.

The 15th annual event will include a Jingle Bell 5K race at 10 a.m. in Snyder Park.

“By incorporating a race, we can reach a new audience and bring even more members of our community together,” said Elaine Morris Roberts, Center City’s interim director.

The Mister and Miss Holiday in The City Pageant runs from noon to 2 p.m. at United Senior Services. First-place winners in each category will receive a $500 scholarship, and runners-up will get $300.

The State Theater will host children’s Christmas movies and the new Center City silent auction, featuring gifts from area businesses and schools.

Holiday in the City will end in the evening with the Grand Illumination, fireworks and a parade that is expected to begin at 6:15 p.m.

Admission to the event is free.

Schedule of events today:

9 a.m. Registration for Jingle Bell 5K Run/Walk at Snyder Park with race at 10 a.m.

Noon: Venues open: Santa Land, Icicle Lane Easts & Sweets, Carriage Rides, State Theatre movies, Center City Association silent auction, Bushnell Banquet center children’s activities and carousel rides

Noon to 3:45 p.m.: Holiday in the Rink Open Skating — Special HITC $5 admission for youths and adults, including skate rental

Noon to 2 p.m.: Mr. and Mrs. Holiday in the City Scholarship Pageant at United Senior Services

3:30 p.m: Toy Soldier begins strolling outside; Mike Hemmelgarn begins balloon animals indoors along Santa Land line

3:30 and 5 p.m.: Marionette shows start at United senior Services; Entertainment at State Theatre

4 to 4:45 p.m.: A Cool Winter’s Night Skating Exhibition at NTPRD Chiller (public skate from 5 to 9:15 p.m.)

6 p.m.: Parade begins

7 p.m.: Fireworks

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