Holiday on the Square
What’s going on under those tents?
A joint initiative of Lackawanna County, ScrantonMade, and Scranton Tomorrow, Holiday on the Square was inspired by this summer’s notably successful Arts on the Square. While the main draw is close to 50 ScrantonMade-curated vendors braving unpredictable weather to sell outdoors under forced air-heated tents, the marketplace imagines downtown as a “whole movable space, Deputy Director of Arts and Culture for Lackawanna County Maureen McGuigan explained. More than 30 fixed site businesses are cooperating with Holiday on the Square through a Shop Scranton campaign that hopes to spread the joy beyond Washington Avenue.
“The commissioners have always wanted to make Lackawanna County’s annual tree lighting a larger Courthouse Square event and so it make sense to merge ScrantonMade’s plans for a holiday fair into a winter version of Arts on the Square,” McGuigan said. The tree lighting will be held at 6 p.m. on Friday, shortly after the event opens at 5 p.m. The Catholic Choral Society will be caroling and hot chocolate and candy canes will be served courtesy of UNICO, McGuigan said. Horse-drawn carriage rides courtesy of Lackawanna County will run from 5 to 7 p.m. Donations will be accepted for the Adopt an Angel Program Vendors will sell until 9 p.m. that night in conjunction with First Friday Scranton.
Several shops are donating to goody bags that the first 150 HOTS attendees will receive. Lackawanna County Library System and the Everhart Museum are cosponsoring an activity tent on Linden Street and The Lackawanna County Visitors Bureau hosting an ugly holiday sweater contest on Saturday at 2 p.m. (register at the ScrantonMade Booth by 1:30 p.m.) for a chance to win gift cards to downtown Scranton businesses including LAVISH Body+Home, Freedlove, Pierre’s Scranton, Northern Light Espresso Bar, The Fanciful Fox, Carl Von Luger Steak & Seafood, Modish LLC, Backyard Ale House, Burlap and Bourbon and more. Categories include ugliest, most festive, most creative, weirdest, and judge’s choice.
Also under the activity tent, shoppers will find artist John Inginamo and his vintage cameras taking authentic “old timey” photos.
Food vendors offering sweet treats include the Baklava Lady, Ah! Some Chocolates, and Sweet Lush Cupcakery. Food trucks are also expected to park on the square,but HOTS organizers are hoping shoppers will support downtown brick and mortar restaurants, McGuigan confirmed.
Also providing live entertainment during Holiday on the Square is the Steve Kurilla Jazz Project on Friday night from 6:30 to 8 p.m. The Cole Family Band and The Coal Town Rounders will perform on Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. respectively.
Parking is only $5 after 3 p.m. and $5 to park all day Saturday in the city’s Central Parking (formerly Scranton Parking Authority) Garages.
Other vendors to look for include iWood, Fly Me Home, and Reclaimed: A Candle Company. The latter offers hand-poured soy wax in unique tins, glasswares, and jars discovered at thrift stores, estate sales, and yard sales in Scranton. The company also offers lip and hand produces scented with essential oils and will refill containers.
Specializing in handmade and upcycled decor, Fly Me Home is located at 299 Parsonage Street in Hughestown. The shop offers mosaic work, mixed media art, and repurposed items such as stamped spoon bookmarks (below) and fork photo holders. A carpenter for more than 40 years. iWood’s Arch Maier crafts his wooden iPhone cases by hand from repurposed wood. Cases start at $20 and run up to $35 with custom engraving.
Children’s Activity Tent Schedule
Friday, Dec. 6, 5-9 p.m.
*Meg Kamosky-Wood Block Printing
*Coloring with Symmetry Dance and Dance Demonstrations
*Lackawanna County Library System and Everhart Museum Collaborative Art Project
*Display of Historic Holiday Photos courtesy of the Scranton Public Library’s Digital Archives. (also on display Saturday)
Saturday, December 7, noon-4 p.m.
*Artists Katie Cummings & Ben Adcroft — Holiday Ornaments
*Coloring with Symmetry Dance and dance demonstrations
*Everhart Museum — Paper Ornaments
*Lackawanna County Library — Snowflake Wreaths and Story Time
What’s in the Bag?
The first 150 visitors to Holiday on the Square this weekend are already the envy of hundreds of shoppers who have been drooling for weeks over ScrantonMade’s social media teasers.
Hand screened bags (designed by ShantyTown, shown below) will be stuffed with not only coupons for additional discounts and promotional freebees but actual awesome items. Early birds will receive one of Rachael Arnone/Bachestinks hand sewn tomato pincushions, a Shantytown keychain, lip balm from Lavish Body + Home, fingerless fashion gloves from Modish, a chocolate chip cookie from POSH at the Scranton Club and the aforementioned coupons and promos including a refrigerator magnet from Embassy Vinyl and a cold drink coozie from Backyard Ale House.
If you go:
What: Holiday on the Square
When: Friday, Dec. 6, 5-9 p.m. and Saturday, Dec. 6, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Where: Courthouse Square, Scranton