The Coaltown Christmas activities sponsored by the City of Welch will kick off on December 2nd with the annual Holiday Parade and lighting of the City Christmas Tree. Several other activities will occur through December 31st including the Christmas Bazaar, the Coal Miners Dinner, and the house and business decorating contest. The Holiday Season will conclude with the third annual Coal Drop to ring in the New Year on December 31st in downtown Welch. All activities are family friendly and open to the public and many are free. Admission details can be found on the CoalTownUSA.org website.
Coaltown Christmas Events –
- Annual Coaltown Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting on Friday, December 2, with the parade line up at 6:30pm at Welch Elementary School and the parade begins at 7:00pm.
- Christmas Bazaar at the Jack Caffrey Arts and Cultural Center on Friday, December 2 at 10am-2pm
- Display Your Favorite Coal Miner Picture at the Jack Caffrey Arts & Cultural Center from December 5 to 9. Learn more on the CityofWelch.com Facebook Page.
- Coal Miner’s Dinner at the Jack Caffrey Arts and Cultural Center on, Tuesday, December 6, to celebrate National Coal Miners Day. Dinner begins at 6:30pm featuring beans, cornbread, and bologna sandwiches and will be followed by a performance of Coal Camp Memories, sponsored by McArts. This event features a one-act play, written and performed by Karen Vuranch. Karen researched life in the coal fields of West Virginia by talking to those who lived in the coal camps and this one-woman performance chronicles the story of Hallie Marie Jones, a woman from a West Virginia coal camp in the 1920’s. Karen has been honored by many organizations including the Tamarack Artisan Fellowship for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts in 2009 and the Corridor Tourism L Commission, receiving the Robert C. Byrd Community Service Award in April of 2005. Other honors include the McWhorter Achievement Award from the West Virginia Storytelling Guild; Performing Artist of the Year for Tamarack, the West Virginia state arts center, the Spirit of West Virginia Award from the state tourism office, and the Celebrate Women Award from the Women’s Commission of the West Virginia Legislature for her storytelling and performances.
- Best Holiday House and Business Decorating Contest, Decorations must be in place by December 16 to be considered for awards. Visit the City of Welch, WV, Coal Town USA Facebook page for more details.
- Trolley Express Rides and The Polar Express Movie Showing (December 4, 10, 11). This event begins with a Trolley Ride before a showing of the Polar Express Movie on December 4, 10, 11th. You MUST pre-register and pay online on the CityofWelch.com website or at City Hall and choose the date you plant to attend, as seats are limited. Wearing your pajamas are encouraged! Rides to the Polar Express Movie start at 1:00pm at the Welch Armory and the movie will begin at 3pm.
- Trolley Lights Tour, Thursday, December 8 and Thursday, December 15 at 7:00pm. Trolley will depart from Welch Parking Building.
- New Year’s Eve Coal Drop in Downtown Welch (December 31) The event will feature music and conclude with fireworks at midnight!
“This is my favorite time of year,” said Welch Mayor Harold McBride. “Christmas is an especially important time in our beautiful West Virginia mountains. The Christmas Season always serves as an extra reminder cherish family and friends and keep our traditions alive. The City of Welch sponsoring the Coaltown Christmas gives us an opportunity to not only highlight our beautiful downtown, but also spread holiday cheer, and continue to salute our Coal Mining heritage. What better time to visit, make memories, and spread holiday cheer, than Christmas time?” he concluded.
Food and street vendors are still being accepted for several of the activities, visit CityofWelch.com or call 304-436-5392 for more information and to register your display/booth/concessions. Vendors featured for attendee enjoyment will include food, handmade arts and crafts, jewelry, cosmetics, candles, and specialty retailers will be available for holiday shopping and good food!
Welch is a city located in McDowell County, West Virginia at the confluence of the Tug and Elkhorn rivers. Incorporated in 1893, its history showcases the Appalachian perseverance that helped build America. It is the county seat of McDowell County and located in the heart of the mountains of Coal Country, USA. Visit www.cityofwelch.com for more information.