Victorian Candlelit Christmas Tradition Continues to Grow

 

Hattiesburg Christmas Tradition Continues to Grow

UPDATE AS OF 12 NOON-12/7/18  ALL SATURDAY ACTIVITIES HAVE BEEN CANCELED DUE TO HEAVY RAIN ALL DAY.  SUNDAY ACTIVITIES WILL PROCEED AS SCHEDULED.

November 16, 2018 (Hattiesburg, Miss.)–On Dec. 8-9, 2018, The Historic Hattiesburg Neighborhood, in partnership with Visit Mississippi, will celebrate the 42nd Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas event as a part of Olde Time Christmas in Hattiesburg. Local residents and visitors are invited to attend the weekend filled with holiday festivities and events downtown. 

The Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas event is a longtime, two-day holiday favorite that draws hundreds of visitors from across the region to explore the spectacle of 18,000 white bags with flickering candles, lining the sidewalks of the Historic Neighborhood and the Downtown District. Guests experience the nostalgia of a simpler time as they walk along streets lined with luminaries and see more than 300 homes and businesses decorated for the holidays. In the neighborhood, visitors can enjoy the popular horse-drawn carriage rides, the Holiday Tour of Historic Homes, refreshments at the Walthall, and carolers throughout the district. 

Carriage rides will circle through the neighborhood leaving the Walthall (600 Rebecca Ave.) starting at 5 p.m. and continuing until 9 p.m. Each tour will take 15-20 minutes. Tickets for the carriage rides will be $10 for adults, $5 for children under 12, and no charge for babies being held in an adult’s arms. Tickets can only be purchased on-site and will be sold only at the Walthall during the event both days. No pre-purchased tickets or reservations will be available.

Open House tickets will be on sale in the Walthall as well. Tickets

Background History of Victorian Candlelit Christmas

Candlelighting began in the Hattiesburg Historic Neighborhood District in 1976 as a way to celebrate the nation’s bicentennial as well as to draw attention to the renovation going on in the district, characterized by homes built between 1884 and 1930. The neighborhood has changed from a declining section populated mostly by older residents to a lively, attractive neighborhood that is home to a vibrant mix of families with young children to retirees and everything in between.

Candlelighting has grown from a one-day display of a few thousand candles to a two-day event with about 18,000 luminaries and other activities. Each year as dusk falls and the candles are lit, hundreds of local and out-of-town visitors flow into the neighborhood, strolling or driving along the streets lined with the glowing candles. Neighborhood residents and visitors walk from house to house, stopping to chat and admire decorations. Many house parties are held to celebrate the season in the glow of thousands of candles.

2015 Victorian Candlelit Christmas

The Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas Expands to Downtown as part of the Downtown Candlelit Christmas

 HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Take a step back in time during the 39th Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas, presented by the Hattiesburg Historic Neighborhood Association and the Historic Hattiesburg Downtown Association, Saturday, Dec. 12th and Sunday, Dec. 13th.  Experience a simpler time as you travel along streets lined with more than 18,000 luminaries and more than 400 homes and businesses decorate their porches and store fronts with garlands of greenery trimmed with bright bows and twinkling lights.

The Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas is a longtime holiday favorite event that draws hundreds of visitors from throughout the region, featuring the popular horse-drawn carriage rides, holiday tour of historic homes and strolling carolers throughout the district.

In addition, The center of activities in the Historic Neighborhood will be The Walthall Center at the Walthall Condominiums, one block west of Bay Street on Rebecca Avenue, between Court and Walnut streets. The carriage rides and parking shuttle will leave from this location.  All entertainment, refreshments, and tickets for both the carriage rides and Tour of Homes will be available at Walthall Center from 5 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. each night. Tickets for the carriage rides will be $5 and will be sold only at the Walthall both days. Tickets for the Tour of Homes will be $10 and they will be available for sale at the Walthall on Saturday from 5-9pm and Sunday from 5-7p.m.

“This year’s Holiday Tour of Homes will feature “The Bay”, a new Bed and Breakfast on Short Bay, The McMillen Home on Bay Street, Atwood Home on Walnut Street. The Tour of Homes will run Saturday and Sunday from 5:30pm until 8:30pm.

“I am excited that this year, on Saturday, the City and the Mayor’s Youth Council are getting involved by helping to line the street of Downtown with luminaries,” said Andrea Saffle, Executive Director of the Historic Hattiesburg Downtown Association.    “In years past, as part of the Holiday Art Walk, merchants along Front and Main Streets have put out luminaries on that Saturday, but this year the luminaries will extend throughout Downtown Hattiesburg on Saturday, December 12th for a Downtown Candlelit Christmas,” said Andrea Saffle, Historic Hattiesburg  Downtown Association Executive Director. “We are excited that the City came on board this year to partner with the Neighborhood to extend the  candle-lined sidewalks throughout downtown.”  In addition to the luminaries there will be lots for visitors to do in Downtown with a performance in the Saenger, Art Exhibits at the Depot, Cultural Center and various galleries throughout downtown, several businesses hosting Holiday Open Houses and of course Photos with Santa.

Other activities throughout Downtown include:

Saturday :

18,000 luminaries will light the sidewalks throughout the the historic neighborhood and Downtown.

Carriage rides leaving from the Walthall starting at 5pm- 9pm, and circling thru the neighborhood. (carriage rides takes about 15-20 minutes)

Refreshments will be for sale in the Walthall- Hot Chocolate, Coffee, Chili, baked goods

Court Street United Methodist Church, 609 Southern Ave. presents the Victorian Christmas Café on Saturday, December 12th from 5 p.m.- 7 p.m.; featuring caroling by the chancel choir and children’s choir, nativity scene by our youth and children, and Santa Claus pictures .They will also offer homemade chili and red beans and rice in the Candlelight Café. Tickets are $5.00 for singles and $20.00 for family of 5. Contact courstreetumc@bellsouth.net or call 601.583.1711 for ticket information.

Bay Street Presbyterian Church, 202 Short Bay St., the oldest surviving church structure in the city will host an “Old Fashioned Carol Sing” with the pipe organ on Saturday at 6 p.m. and on Sunday at 6 p.m. carol singing on the front porch.

Holiday Tour of Homes will feature three  historic homes. The Tour of Homes will run Saturday and Sunday from 5:30pm until 8:30pm. Tickets available at the Walthall.

Saenger Theater- HCLO presents “The Forgotten Carols” 7pm tickets $16

OddFellows Gallery- Tasha Tudor exhibition

South Mississippi Art Association- Holiday Art Show, Train Depot

Click Space- smART Art kids activities, Photos with Santa, Downtown information.

The Little Gallery (a pop up gallery)- 117 E Front Street will be open with exhibits by Rick Wilemon, Dick Ford, Reed Diket, and Christopher Holzinger.

Downtown Businesses Open and hosting events:
Southern Fried Comics- open
Front Street Salon- open house
Body Bar- open house
Bloom’s- open
PlayPen- open
McKenzie’s on Main- open
Bianchi’s – open
Main Street Books- book signings
Thirsty Hippo will host Hub City Comedy Showcase 8pm

Arts Council will host their Amateur Photography Competition and Exhibition from 7-9pm

James McCrory Gallery exhibit in Carter Building

HAC’s Open Studio on Front Street will host artist Andrea Kostyal

Sunday:          

18,000 luminaries will light the sidewalks throughout the the historic neighborhood and Downtown.

Carriage rides leaving from the Walthall starting at 5pm- 9pm, and circling thru the neighborhood. (carriage rides takes about 15-20 minutes)

Refreshments will be for sale in the Walthall- Hot Chocolate, Coffee, Chili, baked goods

Candlelighting started in Hattiesburg Historic Neighborhood District in 1976 as a way to celebrate the nation’s bicentennial as well as to draw attention to the renovation going on in the district, characterized by homes built between 1884 and 1930. The neighborhood has changed from a declining section populated mostly by older residents to a lively, attractive neighborhood that is home to a vibrant mix of families with young children to retirees and everything in between.

Candlelighting has grown from a one-day display of a few thousand candles to a two-day event with about 15,000 luminaries and other activities. Each year as dusk falls and the candles are lit, hundreds of local and out-of-town visitors flow into the neighborhood, strolling or driving along the streets lined with the glowing candles. Neighborhood residents and visitors walk from house to house, stopping to chat and admire decorations. Many house parties are held to celebrate the season in the glow of thousands of candles.

2014 Annual Candlelit Christmas scheduled Dec 13 & 14th, 2014

 

2014 Map final

Click Here to Download the 2014 event brochure

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Take a step back in time during the 38th Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas, presented by the Hattiesburg Historic Neighborhood Association and Mississippi Power, Saturday, Dec. 13th and Sunday, Dec. 14th. Experience a simpler time as you travel along streets lined with more than 15,000 luminaries and more than 400 homes and businesses decorate their porches and store fronts with garlands of greenery trimmed with bright bows and twinkling lights.

The Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas is a longtime holiday favorite event that draws hundreds of visitors from throughout the region, featuring the popular horse-drawn carriage rides, holiday tour of historic homes and strolling carolers throughout the district.

The center of activities will be The Walthall Center at the Walthall Condominiums, one block west of Bay Street on Rebecca Avenue, between Court and Walnut streets. The carriage rides and parking shuttle will leave from this location. All entertainment, refreshments, and tickets for both the carriage rides and Tour of Homes will be available at Walthall Center from 5 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. each night. Tickets for the carriage rides will be $5 and will be sold only at the Walthall both days. Tickets for the Tour of Homes will be $10 and they will be available for sale at the Walthall on Saturday from 5-9pm and Sunday from 5-7p.m.

“We are so excited to announce that on the this year’s Holiday Tour of Homes we are including apartments in Walnut Square, The American Building and the Carter Building downtown,” said Andrea Saffle, President of the Historic Neighborhood Association. The tour will also feature The Bay, a new Bed and Breakfast on Short Bay and the Yore-White House on Bay Street. The Tour of Homes will run Saturday and Sunday from 5:30pm until 8:30pm.

 

Neighborhood Thanksgiving Potluck Dinner- Tuesday, Nov 12th, 2013

Potluck is set for Tuesday, November 12th at the Walthall

Calling all Neighbors! Annual Pot Luck Thanksgiving Dinner will be held Tuesday, Nov 12th at the Walthall.  Social begins at 6:30pm  Dinner opens at 7 p.m. What to bring?

HHNA will provide the turkeys and the hams, as well as some soft drinks.  Please bring your own adult beverage if you like, and drinks for the kids if you want something other than water, tea or soft drinks.

WHAT TO BRING: If you live on-

Walnut, Southern, Rebecca, River Avenue, Hall, W.Laurel or Williams:  Side Dish/ Salad/or Dressing

Dabbs, Roni,  Elizabeth, Court, Bay, East Laurel,  Short Bay, (Walnut optional): Dessert Items

Walnut Circle Apt & Captains Quarters:  Any side dish or dessert

 

Candle Sales Info for the 38th Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas- Dec 14 & 15th, 2013

The purpose of Candle Lighting is to showcase our wonderful neighborhood here in Downtown Hattiesburg! Please invite family and friends to visit and take part in our Neighborhood Celebration.  

CANDLE SALES: The candles, bags, and sand are considered a “candle set or kit”. The “candle sets” may be purchased for $5 per dozenCandle sales will be from 8:30 am to Noon on Saturday & Sunday– December 7th  and 8th at The Walthall and again on Saturday, Dec 14th .   The sand is located on the East side of the condo near Court Street. . Bring a shovel and bucket to transport your sand. The Walthall School is located on the corner of Court St. and Rebecca Ave.

*Please renew your Neighborhood Association/Walthall Foundation membership or join the association by paying Neighborhood/Walthall Dues when you pick up your candle kits.  Annual household dues ($25) allow us to take care of the Walthall grounds, pay the bills for the Walthall Condo, conduct neighborhood beautification projects, and finance neighborhood gatherings like Night Out Against Crime and Thanksgiving Potluck.  Checks made payable to HHNA or Walthall Foundation.

OTHER INFO:

Carriage rides will be from 5 to 9 PM on Saturday and Sunday.  Ticket prices are $5 for adults & children (lap riders – kids three and under ride free).  Tickets will be sold at the Walthall School on a first come, first served basis.  There are no reservations and no group discounts. (This years route will be extended to include Rebecca, Dabbs, and Bay Street.

Holiday Tour of Homes will be on Saturday and Sunday Dec 14th  and 15th   from 5pm until 8:30pm.  Open houses will feature 2 homes in the neighborhood; 104 and 108 Short Bay as well as (hopefully- apartments in the Carter and American Building).  Admission is $10 and tickets will be available in the Walthall.

Refreshments will be sold in the Walthall Neighborhood Condo from 5 to 9 PM on both nights.   Please Sign up and let us know if you will bake some goodies for us to sell.  Hot chocolate, coffee, & water will be sold along with the baked goods donated by neighbors.   If you have baked goods to deliver for the refreshment counter on candle lighting weekend, please deliver them before Noon on Saturday December 8th as the building may be locked up until time for the carriage rides to begin.

PLEASE sign up to help out at the Walthall during Candle Lighting – please contact:

  • Andrea Saffle  601-270-1373   a.saffle@megagate.com
  • Debi Davenport 601-310-6991 debidavenport@comcast.net
  • Sarah Crimmins sarahscrimmins@gmail.com

HATTIESBURG HISTORIC NEIGHBORHOOD- CANDLE LIGHTING 101…THE BASICS

The first step in getting ready for candle lighting is to determine how many candles you will need. Step off your sidewalks at about 3-foot intervals. Some people “double bag”, that is they place candles every 3 feet on both sides of the walk.  Others “single bag” and place them along one side of the sidewalk or along the curb, and some folks prefer to zigzag their bags along sidewalks & walkways. This is totally up to you.

After you have determined the number of bags you want for your design then you are ready for the next step. Purchasing your “candle sets”. They are available for purchase at the Walthall.  The sand will also be available at the Walthall.  The candles, bags, and sand are considered a “candle set”. The “candle sets” may be purchased for $5 per dozen.  Candle sales will be from 8:30 am to Noon on Saturday and Sunday the week before candlelighting, and again on Saturday of Candlelighting. IF you need them before that- call or email Andrea to make arrangements to pick them up- 601.270.1373 or a.saffle@megagate.com.  The sand is located on the East side of the condo near Court Street. . Bring a shovel and bucket to transport your sand. The Walthall School is located on the corner of Court Street and Rebecca Avenue.

After you get your “candle sets” home now you are ready for the next step. Prepare the bags by turning down the top of the bag like a cuff. Fold the bags down on the inside or outside about 2 inches.  Most people do their bag preparation the morning of candle lighting, or if they have several dozen, they do it the night before.

The next step is to place a cup of sand in the bottom of the bag. Some folks prefer to fill the bags with a cup of sand and then place the candle in the bag as they walk along the sidewalk. Others prefer to fill their bags with sand in the backyard and then bring the bags around in a wagon or wheel barrow. If you have a crew of folks you can approach it assembly line style. Someone places the bag, another fills it with sand and the next one places the candle in the sand. You will discover what works best for you.

The next step is to light the candles by 5:00 PM on Saturday (about dusk)*. A long cardboard tube is handy for blowing out candles (a wrapping paper tube) just after 9:00 PM on Saturday night.  On Sunday night, relight the candles at dusk and then just let them burn out as they will.  * Those long hand-held safety lighters seem to work well for lighting the candles in the bags.

Weather is always an unknown factor.  WE ONLY CANCEL IF IT IS A TOTAL RAIN OUT.  If it is POURING rain or VERY windy on the first night most people save them until the second night. Candles will burn in a mist or light rain if it isn’t too windy.

Everything else goes on according to schedule regardless of weather.

Candle Lighting Weekend is Saturday and Sunday, December 14th and 15th , 2013

HHNA Recognized by HHDA for Leadership

Historic Hattiesburg Downtown Association’s Leadership Award, 2012

Presented to an individual, organization or business that has made an outstanding contribution to the Vitality of Downtown Hattiesburg.

The partnership with the Historic Neighborhood Association is one of tremendous importance to HHDA. They regularly hot special events and are a customer base for our restaurants and retailers. Recognized by the American Planning Association as a Great Neighborhood in 2011, The Historic Hattiesburg Neighborhood Association has made a significant impact on the economy of Hattiesburg and particularly downtown. Under the leadership of Andrea Saffle, they have expanded the Crawfish Jam, created the BBQ Showdown and most importantly the Victorian Candlelit Christmas.

Thank you to Betsy and the HHDA board for honoring Andrea Saffle and HHNA with the Leadership Award for 2012 for our contribution to the vitality of Downtown Hattiesburg. We value our partnership with HHDA and look forward to an exciting future for Downtown!

 

2012 Candlelighting coming up Dec 8th & 9th

The Annual Victorian Candlelit Christmas will be held December 8th& 9th from dark-9pm each night in the Historic Hattiesburg Neighborhood in downtown Hattiesburg.  “Candlelighting” is a longtime holiday favorite event that draws hundreds of visitors from throughout the region, featuring the popular horse-drawn carriage rides, holiday tour of historic homes, luminary lined streets and sidewalks, and strolling carolers throughout the district.

The center of activities will be The Walthall Center at the Walthall Condominiums, one block west of Bay Street on Rebecca Avenue, between Court and Walnut streets. The carriage rides and shuttle will leave from this location.  All entertainment, refreshments, and tickets for both the carriage rides and Tour of Homes will be available at Walthall Center from 5 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. each night. Tickets for the carriage rides will be $5 and will be sold only at the Walthall both days. Tickets for the Tour of Homes will be $10 and they will be available for sale at the Walthall on Saturday from 5-9pm and Sunday from 5-7p.m.

This year’s Holiday Tour of Homes will feature four homes, and will run Saturday and Sunday from 5:30pm until 8:30pm.  The tour will feature one of the Grand homes of the neighborhood, “Great Oaks” at 106 Short Bay, a 1930’s Bunglalow at 518 Rebecca Ave., and two apartments in the Walthall. Condominiums in the Walthall will showcase great apartment living in this restored historic landmark with four apartments open.  Click Here for 2012 Victorian Candlelit Christmas brochure.    For more information call 601 270 1373 or email info@hattiesburghistoricneighborhood.com

Calling All Neighbors- We need YOU to Volunteer Today for Candlelighting

Candlelighting is coming up fast!  Remember that this is a neighborhood wide event and takes a neighborhood wide effort and if everyone does just a little bit- no one has to do it all.  So Please sign up today and do as much as you can!

Below are several opportunities to get involved- please reply to me and let me know what you will sign up for.   WE NEED YOUR HELP and its a great opportunity to meet your neighbors and experience what makes our neighborhood so special. You are always welcome to bring your kids and your favorite beverage to any of these work days!

We need help finishing decorating inside the Walthall- and lighting the park-  

1- We need able body men to run the power cords for the big trees and to help put our 18 foot tree  together.  We have the lights put on them already- just need help putting it together.

2- Inside Walthall- need men to help hang garland over the doorways outside- lifting and getting on the ladders.  Others to help decorate tree, put garland on the railings, etc.

If you can volunteer 1 hour! That would be a huge help.  Anytime Saturday morning (this and next, Sunday anytime 1-3.

Time Slots for Candlelighting Volunteers NEEDED:

Candle Sales:   

Saturday, Dec 1st        Need 6-8 people per shift

8:30 am – 10:30 am        signed up:    Jennifer Bishop, Alyce Lucius, Cynthia Anderson

10:30 am- 11:30 am      Signed up:    Debbie Ferrill, Pam Hill, Karley Hill

11:30 am- 12:30 pm      Signed up:    Tina Haley, Ray Haley, Mic Davis, Michael Anderson

Sunday, Dec 2nd        Need 6-8 people per shift 

10:30am – 12:30 pm       Signed up:  Tina Haley, Jill Wiest, Barbara Ward

12:30 pm- 2:30 p.m.      Bonita Pipkins

Saturday, Dec 8th      Need 6-8 people per shift

8:30 am – 10:30 am        signed up:  David Echevarria, Sohbian Thriffley Ashlyn Brock,

10:30 am – 12:30 pm     Signed up: Lou Ann Schrotter

Ticket Sales inside  Walthall during candlelighting event

Saturday, Dec 8th     Need 2-3 people per shift

4:45 pm – 7:00 pm       Signed up: Joe & Jennifer Bishop

7:00 pm- 9:00 pm        Signed up: Leslie & Alex Bilancia

Sunday, Dec 9th        Need 2-3 people per shift

4:45 pm – 7:00 pm       Signed up:

7:00 pm- 9:00 pm        Signed up: Tate & Lhay Thriffley

Refreshment Sales- in Walthall during candlelighting event

Saturday, Dec 8th       Need 3-4 people per shift

4:45 pm – 7:00 pm       Signed up:            Ashlyn Brock, Jr & Leslie Shows

7:00 pm- 9:00 pm        Signed up:

Sunday, Dec 9th        Need 3-4 people per shift

4:45 pm – 7:00 pm       Signed up:  Mitzi Russell, Rachel (?)

7:00 pm- 9:00 pm        Signed up:

Open House Guides to work at Open Houses during candlelighting event- Locations TBA

Saturday, Dec 8th       Need 8-10 people per shift

4:45 pm – 7:00 pm       Signed up:

7:00 pm- 9:00 pm        Signed up:

Sunday, Dec 9th       Need 8-10 people per shift

4:45 pm – 7:00 pm       Signed up:

7:00 pm- 9:00 pm        Signed up:

Volunteer to Bring Baked Goods to be sold at Refreshments table on Saturday and Sunday

Must be delivered to Walthall no later than 5 pm on Saturday, Dec 8th. Please package for individual serving sizes.

Signed Up:  Eric Tate. Jennifer Bishop, Melissa Beauvais, Mitzi Russell, Beverly McMillen, Tina Haley, Jennifer Ferrill Shaidnagle, Karen Saffle, Karen Rowell

Putting Out bags & lighting candles in common areas around the neighborhood. These areas include the round abouts, vacant houses, and Bay Street Median. This is very labor intensive- so we need all the help we can get!   MAKES GREAT SERVICE HOURS!