’Tis the season to shop local. The streets of downtown Lufkin are decked out for the holiday season, and Main Street Lufkin encourages shoppers to shop small and support our local businesses.

Join Main Street Lufkin and Lufkin’s downtown merchants for our first Downtown Christmas Extravaganza, which will be in conjunction with Main Street Market Days from 5-9 p.m. Saturday.

Enjoy great holiday shopping from local merchants and vendors, live music and dance performances, food trucks and festive activities the whole family will love. Santa Claus will make an appearance and will be in Cotton Square Park for pictures.

Enjoy an evening under the stars full of Christmas merriment in downtown Lufkin with a petting zoo and pony rides, a rock climbing wall and bounce house, a puppeteer production by City Church, dance performances by Susan’s Studio of Dance, performances by the Lufkin ISD Middle School Jazz Band and Carolers, and Heavy C Entertainment will be the DJ for the evening.

The downtown retail stores will have in-store specials with tasty holiday treats to enjoy while you shop. There will be a large gift basket giveaway provided by the downtown businesses. Be sure to pick up your punch card from the Main Street information booth, which will be located by The Pines Theater, to be eligible for the basket of goodies. As always, admission is free. First Street will be blocked off to through traffic turning it into a bazaar of vendors and fun. Celebrate this holiday season in downtown Lufkin.

Experience the magic of Christmas, and send a letter to Santa. The Letters to Santa mailbox will be available in Cotton Square Park until Dec. 25. Letters to Santa will be selected and published in The Lufkin Daily News.

Make this Christmas one to remember by placing a lock on the “Locked with Love Tree” in Cotton Square Park.

“The tree represents a strong and growing love, and the rings around the tree represent infinity or the enduring love of a couple,” said Barbara Thompson, Main Street director. Couples can come to the park, put their lock on the tree, drop the key in the sign by the tree and show that their love is a lasting relationship.

Main Street Market Days will continue through 2019, so mark your calendar for the third Saturday of each month and enjoy a great day of shopping and exploring in downtown Lufkin.

If you are interested in becoming a vendor, booth spaces are $30 each or $40 each with electricity, and full details can be found online at cityoflufkin.com or by calling 633-0359.

See you around downtown.

Emily Brashear is an administrative assistant for the Lufkin Convention & Visitors Bureau. Her email address is ebrashear@cityoflufkin.com.