Christmas in the Village in the Veto-Barlow-Vincent area will celebrate its fifth year on Saturday.
"This year is bigger and better," said organizer Susie Ashley. "When we started five years ago, my goal was to get the community involved, and they continue to get more and more involved every year."
This year's event will have nearly 70 vendors, including shops, home-based businesses and crafters throughout the area.
Crafters will be on hand from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Barlow-Vincent Elementary School and the Barlow branch of the Washington County Public Library. Additionally, various retailers, such as White Oak Pharmacy and the Par Mar gas station, will offer Christmas specials and various items will be sold out of 10 homes.
There will also be free lunch and refreshments offered at some Barlow churches. The Lighthouse Baptist Church, located at 8135 Ohio 339, Vincent, will have a free lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and other churches will offer refreshments.
Local merchants from Corner, on Ohio 339 just north of Ohio 7, to Layman, Ohio 550 west of Barlow, sponsor the event. Crafters and merchants in homes will be open from 9 a.m. 4 p.m. and retailers will be open their normal hours with Christmas specials.
If you go
What: Christmas in the Village.
When: Starts at 9 a.m. Saturday, annual Festival of Lights parade starts at 5 p.m.
Where: Veto-Barlow-Vincent area (maps are available at many area businesses); parade goes from Barlow-Vincent Elementary to Ohio 550 and end at the Barlow Fairgrounds.
Who: 67 vendors, including retail merchants, home-based businesses and crafters.
Maps including participating vendors and retail merchants are available for pickup at area businesses. The maps will only show roads with participating merchants.
"Nearly every merchant and crafter in the area has chosen to participate this year, and I couldn't be happier," Ashley said. "With the way the economy has been this past year, my goal is to help each and every retail and crafting business with the Christmas in the Village."
This will also be the fourth year for the Village Christmas Parade, with lineup at 4 p.m. Saturday at Barlow-Vincent Elementary School.
"The Warren High School Marching Warriors will lead the parade this year at 5 p.m.," Ashley said.
The parade will go up Warrior Drive, turn left onto Ohio 550 and end at the Barlow Fairgrounds.
Those who would like to participate in the parade, which is sponsored by the Scenic Hills Lions Club, do not need to pre-register or pay a fee, just show up. Because the parade will take place in the evening, all floats must be illuminated and walkers must carry flashlights.
The parade will end with the lighting of the community Christmas tree and lights festival in the fairgrounds.
This will be the first year for the drive-through illuminated lights in the fairgrounds.
"This brings the community together for the holiday celebrations, and this has been a dream of mine for so long," Ashley said. "I'm so pleased it keeps growing and growing."