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Weekend Events: Dominion Christmas Parade, Handel’s Messiah, Petersburg Holiday Parade

Posted at 5:26 PM, Dec 03, 2015

RICHMOND, Va. — There are many Christmas events to keep you busy this weekend and beyond.

Friday, December 4

The 31st Annual Grand Illumination of James Center, at 10th E. Cary Streets, 5:45pm – 7 p.m. Kicks off at 5 p.m. with SPARC for 45 minutes of Christmas Caroling. VCU’s Pep Band at 5:45: The Peppas will get the crowd ready for the Illumination from the Main Stage. At 5:59pm the lights will be turned on the downtown office buildings lights and the James Center’s Great Tree & Reindeer! Enjoy two blocks of family entertainment from 6 p.m. – 7 p.m. SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now) will be collecting toys for 200 Richmond area children. For more information call! 804-344-3232. Free admission.

RVA Holiday Canal Boat Rides at the Turning Basin, 14th & Dock Streets, Free for all ages, 6pm-9pm, A  20-25 minute boat ride of Richmond’s historic canal  with historic narration on the James River & Kanawha Canal. Look for volunteers with free RVA blinky lights to celebrate the season safely. Produced by Venture Richmond.  For more information call 804-788-6466 or visit

Poe Museum Illumination, 1914 East Main Street 6-9pm.  Enjoy a Victorian Christmas, music and crafts in the Poe Garden. For more information Call 804-648-5523 or Free Event!

Friday and Saturday, Free Horse and Carriage Rides, Rides will start and end in Shockoe Slip at the fountain at 13th and E. Cary Streets, from 6pm-10pm.  Take a ride in a holiday decorated 12-passenger wagon from James River Carriages through Shockoe Slip and Shockoe Bottom. One round trip ride per person please. Sponsored by Venture Richmond. For information call 804-350-7752.

Main Street Station Holiday Open House and Illumination, Main Street Station and the Plaza, 1500 E. Main Street, Free admission,  from 5:30pm-9pm. Enjoy holiday music and refreshments and entertainment.  Watch the Polar Express movie on a 40’ inflatable screen in the Plaza across the street from the Station starting at 6:30pm. At 6pm listen to Richmond Tuba Christmas features 150 tuba players followed by the illumination, Dr’s of Jazz quartet at 7pm and James River Ringers Bell Choir at 8pm. Hundley Horse drawn Carriage rides in the plaza, food trucks, and free parking in all adjacent lots to the station. For more information call 804-523-3329.

Busch Gardens Christmas Town is open during the month of December and January 1 and 3.

Fredericksburg Holiday Craft Show at the Fredericksburg Expo Center, 2371 Carl D. Silver Parkway, Friday & Saturday 10am – 6pm &  Sunday 11am – 4pm. featuring over 250 vendors. For more details call 540-548-5555.

The Bizarre Bazaar 40 years of Fabulous! Through Sunday at Richmond Raceway Complex, Friday & Saturday – 10am-7pm, Sunday 10am – 5pm The Bizarre Bazaar 40 years of Fabulous! Four buildings with over 400 exhibitors, adults $9, children 2-12, $1.50. For more details visit

Saturday, December 5

32nd annual Dominion Christmas Parade, 10am, from the Science Museum of Virginia, continues East to 7th Street. Grand Marshall, American Idol Finalist Rayvon Owen, Owen will perform live for the CBS 6 audience and along the parade route. Can’t get down to the parade route, no worries, you can watch it live on WTVR-CBS6 on the day of the parade from 10 a.m. to noon, or catch it on Christmas Day.

VCU Black Awakening Choir, “The Reawakening” Concert, 6pm, doors open at 5:30 p.m. at Second Baptist Church, 1400 Idlewood Avenue, hosted by Vernon Gordon, featuring National Recording Artist DeWayne Woods and Anthony “Junebug” Turner.

Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis, registration starts at 7:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m. kids reindeer dash; 9 a.m. 5K run/walk, participants are encouraged to dress up in costumes. CBS 6 Candace Burns will kick off the event at 8 a.m.

Caring Santa at Virginia Center Commons, Glen Allen, providing children with special needs and their families with a sensory friendly environment to safely visit Santa Claus. Families will not have to wait in line, but will sign-in and be called when it is their turn.   8:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Virginia Center Commons (JCPenney Wing) 10101 Brook Road, Glen Allen. Visits with Santa are free. Photo package prices will vary. Please call (804) 266-9000.

2nd Annual Dancing Toy Drive, 6 p.m. -10 p.m, Rigby’s Jig Dance Studio, 5470 W Broad Street,  Salsa Guy Richmond, Rigby’s Jig Dance Studio, Capiku Productions, DJ El Duro and the Multicultural Offices of Richmond and Chesterfield counties are organizing a Dance & Toy drive. Donate an unwrapped toy with a value of at least $10 and with your donation you can receive free dance lessons & admission to our Christmas dance on December 5. Dance lessons will be available from 6pm to 9pm. Dancing from 9pm until midnight at Rigby’s Jig Dance Studio located at 5470 W Broad St. Richmond, VA 23230. Register for the dance and lessons here.

For information contact: Angel Rodriguez at: 804-601-6261or send an email

City of Petersburg Holiday Happenings, Annual Christmas Parade with the theme “Eco-Friendly Holiday Season”, 3 p.m. at the Walnut Hill Market Place (water tower) on South Crater Road: Information, call (804)733-2394.

1864 Christmas, 5 pm at Blandford Church, 111 Rochelle Lane. Historic program commemorating the last Christmas before the end of the Civil War – carolers, letters from soldiers and other costumed historical interpretation.  Period clothing is encouraged.  Sponsored by Dearing-Beauregard Chapter SCV.  Free and open to the public. Details 804-733-2396.

Sunday, December 6

Sunday at Taziki’s in the Innsbrook Shoppes, Santa arrives at 3pm on a fire engine courtesy of Henrico County Fire Station #22.The attend is free but folks can have their picture taken with Santa for a donation to the Henrico Firefighters & Families Charitable Foundation. The foundation was created by the men and women of Henrico County’s Fire Department to support members of the fire family when illness, injury or death occur. For those who can’t attend Sunday’s event, Taziki’s will be collecting donations for HFFCF through December 13th. For more information visit or call Tazikis at 804-747-8294.

The Petersburg Symphony will perform “Home for the Holidays”, 4pm at Petersburg High School, 3101 Johnson Road. Information call (804)732-0999.

Future Events: Monday, December 7

Girls For A Change return of the Diva Bag Auction, featuring donated bags from Sarah Jessica Parker, Prada and other designers doors open at 5:30, event starts at 6pm at The Trinity Family Life Center, 3601 Dill Road. Funds from the auction will benefit programs for Girls For A Change. Meet and greet with special guest speaker Beverly Bond – Founder and Executive Director of Black Girls Rock, Inc. and hosted by Clovia Lawrence of Radio One’s KISS FM.

Tuesday, December 8

Philadelphia native Denise King performs for the Richmond Jazz Society’s Guest Educators Series, two shows at 7 p.m. and 9:15 p.m. (Doors Open at 6 p.m.) at Capital Ale House, Downtown Music Hall, 623 East Main Street, Richmond. Advance tickets $25 per show, Online at, Day of show $30 per show – Cash Only. For more info contact RJS at (804) 643-1972.

Friday, December 11

The Friends of the Richmond Mounted Squad invites you to the Blessing of the Animals, join the Richmond Police Mounted Unit, Richmond K9’s, working horses and dogs, pets and fellow animal lovers. Blessing performed by Reverend Karen Thompson of Thompson’s Border Collies at Shockoe Slip Fountain (Morgan Fountain) in front of the Martin Agency. Owners and pets are encouraged to dress up for the season. Pet food donations to Animal Adoption and Rescue Foundation (AARF) and carrots and apples accepted by the Police Horses. For more information call Sue Mullins 804-543-9088. Details