Holiday events to liven up downtown

About 10 Moffat County High School band members will be spreading Christmas cheer Saturday, during the Downtown Business Association Hometown Holiday.

The band will travel to a few shops throughout the day -- fighting off the cold -- and playing its Christmas collection.

Music is a key ingredient for the DBA's Hometown Holiday, an event meant to keep Craig shoppers in town.

"There's a lot of cool shops downtown," DBA President Karen Brown said. "We're just trying to get people to stay downtown."

Spirited music isn't the only thing happening downtown this weekend.

The DBA is taking entries for gingerbread houses until 4 p.m. today at the Museum of Northwest Colorado. The houses will be judged at 4 p.m. Saturday and will be on display until Dec. 16.

Down the road, the Centennial Mall hosts the Winter Arts and Crafts Show on Friday from noon to 7 p.m., and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Mall property manager Vicki Hall said roughly 80 vendors will line the mall, selling products including quilts and tamales.

"There's something for everyone and everything is unique," she said. "It's really the last stop before Christmas to pick up something unique."

Those looking for Christmas spirit rather than something tangible can visit the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' nativity set today and Friday from 5 to 8 p.m., and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the church, 1295 W. Ninth St.

"(We do this) just to celebrate the season with the community, just to join with the community in worship of our savior," nativity set organizer Coleen Fenton said.

Last year's exhibit included 170 nativity sets, including a hand-crocheted set from Indonesia, a puzzle from the 1800s, which was passed down through the generations.

Entries for this year's exhibit are accepted from 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. today at the church.

For a less Christmas-like event, Colorado State University Moffat County Extension Office Director Elisa Shackelton is offering a class on cheese making.

Shackelton hosts the free two-hour queso fresco workshops Saturday at 8 a.m., 10 a.m. noon and 2 p.m. The workshop teaches attendees how to make the popular Hispanic cheese in a safe way to avoid Listeriosis, an infection caused by bacteria that can be found in unpasteurized milk or its products.

Shackelton urges people interested in attending to pre-register with the CSU Moffat County Extension Office at 824-9180.

"The class is for anybody," Shackelton said. "Hopefully people can learn to make it on their own."

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