BETHALTO - The Christmas spirit is alive and going strong in Bethalto.

This weekend will be a "big Christmas weekend," Bethalto Mayor Alan Winslow said.

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The Kiwanis Club is hosting a free pancake breakfast with Santa at the Bethalto Senior Center from 9 to 11 a.m. on Saturday.

The Christmas Village in Central Park will be open from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday and from 4 to 8 p.m. on Sunday.

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"Bring the kids out for beautiful lighting displays, petting zoo, Christmas Train rides, live Nativity, visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus, and live Christmas music," Winslow said.

The Bethalto Community Choir will perform their annual Christmas concert at 3 p.m. on Sunday at at the First Baptist Church on Moreland Road.

The Bethalto Spirit’s 26th annual Victorian Christmas Walk will be held downtown from 4 to 7 p.m. on Sunday. The walk will feature period costumed actors, carriage rides, numerous Christmas displays, entertainment, a lot of snacks including cookies, popcorn, roasted chestnuts, donuts, coffee, hot chocolate, cider etc. There will also be a Santa’s workshop where the kids can build a toy and take it home with them.

"All of these events are completely free of charge; they are provided as a community service by the many volunteers who enjoy making Bethalto such a great place to live," Mayor Winslow said.

"I hope that you will bring the whole family to enjoy our weekend long celebration of Christmas in Bethalto," the mayor added.

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