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Vine Grove residents plan to gather this week to support children in need and promote a sense of community.
The annual auction for the Christmas for the Children program is Thursday, and Dickens of a Christmas is planned for Friday and Saturday.
The auction supports the purchase of gifts for children in the community identified by school resource centers as needing help for getting gifts for Christmas. The money raised is used during a shopping trip with the children to buy clothes and toys.
It begins with a free chili dinner at 6 p.m. Thursday at City Hall on West Main Street. The auction begins at 6:30 p.m.
Guests are asked to bring cakes or deserts to auction or share.
City events coordinator Donna Broadway said seeing people paying $500 for a cake to support local families gets her in the Christmas spirit.
“They’re just good, good people,” she said.
One family called from Florida to make sure they were back in town to attend the auction, Broadway said.
“It’s just that the people’s hearts are open to donating,” she said. “They want to see the kids have a good Christmas, and the people there see them donating.”
The Heartland Fillies are scheduled to sing, members of the Vine Grove Fire Department will serve food and Boy Scouts are planning to clean up.
“Everybody’s doing a little something,” she said.
Dickens of a Christmas follows the next two days. The event features area residents dressed as characters from “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens.
Broadway said she has costumes for people who want to dress up.
Some form of Christmas festivities have been going on in Vine Grove for more than 50 years, and Dickens continues to draw large crowds, she said.
“I think the people around here like to dress up,” she said. “They like to play the part.”
The community spirit behind the auction and old-fashioned holiday fun also seems to make residents proud of their town and willing to join in, Broadway said.
“Everyone seems to get along here,” she said. “They love their neighbors.”
Events Friday begin with Santa and Mrs. Claus in Jenny’s Park and miniature horse and carriage rides at 5 p.m., horse-drawn carriage rides at 5:30 p.m. and a candle lighting ceremony and Christmas sing-along at 6:15 p.m.
Saturday events are at Brown Street School behind City Hall and include the arrival of Mrs. Claus at 8 a.m.
Amber Coulter can be reached at (270) 505-1746 or email@example.com.