Lisa Carter Waring
 |  Correspondent

As the Christmas season begins, the Hope Mills Parks and Recreation Department is sponsoring many festive, fun and safe activities for our community families.

The annual Festival of Lights will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 4 at Hope Mills Municipal Park. The town tree will be lit for the holiday season at 5:30 p.m.  

Along with the tree lighting, there will be hot chocolate available, a s’mores station and Santa in a snow globe. There will also be an outdoor movie that will begin at 6 p.m. on Ballfields 1 and 2.  

On Dec. 5, Pictures With Santa and Boxed Breakfast will take place at Hope Mills Municipal Park. There are two time slots available. The first is 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., and the second is 9:30 a.m. until 11 a.m.

A professional photographer will take photos, which will be available for purchase. The boxed breakfast will be catered by McAllister’s Deli and include a breakfast egg and cheese sandwich either on a croissant or wrap with your choice of bacon, sausage or ham, along with fresh fruit and yogurt.

There are limited spaces available, and you must register online to attend. Registration is open until Dec. 1. The fee for Pictures With Santa and Boxed Breakfast is $5 per person.

Know anyone interested in getting a personal letter from Santa?  You can register online to have one sent. Registration will be between Nov. 23 and Dec. 13.  The fee for letters from Santa is $2 per letter.

Another event this year is called Light Up Hope Mills. It is sponsored by the Hope Mills Appearance Committee and will be Dec. 14-Jan. 4.  

Residents are encouraged to light up their homes, porches and yards and complete an online registration. Registration will be Nov. 16-Dec. 9. The neighborhood with the most registered homes will receive a drive-by visit from Santa at 4 p.m. Dec. 23.

You and your family can visit the Twinkle Trail at Hope Mills Municipal Park on Dec. 4-Jan. 4. This is a brand new event for our community and is sure to put everyone in a festive spirit.

The town park will be decked out with more than100 trees sporting 12,000 lights. The Twinkle Trail will be lit from dusk until 9 p.m., and I understand that Santa will make a visit from time to time.

There are two more new events this year.

Our town tree will be on display beside Thomas Campbell Oakman Memorial Chapel on South Main Street, and the community can help decorate it. There will be decorations available for you to hang or you can bring your own ornament that represents your family or business to donate.

All donated ornaments become property of the town. Decorating the town tree will take place between Dec. 4 and Jan. 4.

Trees of Hope is another new celebration that will take place Dec. 14-Jan. 4t at Hope Mills Lake Park. There will be five 6-foot-tall Christmas trees at the lake park that you, your family, church or business can sponsor.

Please note all lights must be battery-powered or solar and no edible ornaments are allowed. Voting for the best decorated tree will take place online. On Jan. 3, a prize will be awarded.

Registration to decorate a tree is online only Nov. 16- Dec. 9.  The fee is $30.

Don’t forget that three holiday events, Pictures With Santa and Boxed Breakfast, 

Trees of Hope and Light Up Hope Mills all require online advanced registration. For more information about any of these activities, visit the town website at or call Hope Mills Parks and Recreation at 910-424-4555.

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