Houma Downtown Christmas Festival kicks off the holiday season

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The 2019 Houma Downtown Christmas Festival, presented by the Terrebonne Parish Consolidated Government (TPCG), will be offering free activities, entertainment and treats the whole family can enjoy on Saturday, Dec. 7, beginning at noon.  

The festival kicks off with a free screening of Disney’s “The Muppet Christmas Carol” at 7 p.m. in the Houma Courthouse Square on the Friday (Dec. 6) before the event.  

There will be plenty to do and see the day of the festival, with food and arts and craft vendors, professional face painting, an illuminated and decorated Downtown Houma, a Mr. And Mrs. Claus meet and greet (7:30 p.m.-9 p.m. in the Courthouse Square), balloon arch for photographs and much more.  

All the above-mentioned activities are free except for purchasing of goods from the various vendors. 

Free cookies and hot chocolate, among other treats, will be provided for guests as well.  

Attendees will be able to enjoy music all day long, too, performed by local church members, students and other local talent.  

At 5 p.m., the annual Christmas parade will start. The parade will begin on Stadium Drive next to Terrebonne High School, go down Main Street, turn right into Barrow Street and end at School Street.  

“If you just want to come and meet with your family and friends and enjoy Christmas for the day, it’s the place to be,” TPCG Cultural Resource Manager Anne Picou said. “There’s a lot of Christmas music; there’s a lot of activities for the children that are free. It’s a day that doesn’t cost the parents a whole lot to entertain their children. Then you have the parade, which everybody enjoys.”  

After Terrebonne Parish President Gordon Dove took office, he wanted to add more activities during the day leading up to the Christmas parade and move the parade to Saturday, Picou said, which sparked the festival. Now in its fourth year, the festival brings in 5,000 to 7,000 people throughout the dayPicou said.  She attributes that success to the many sponsors and volunteers the event has. “We’re always very grateful for all of our volunteers and our sponsors,” she added. 

The proceeds from the festival go to repairing and replacing the Christmas decorations and lights, Picou said, and other additions to improve the event.  

“It’s never been designed for money-making for the Main Street Program…,” she said. “It’s more to give back to the community during Christmas time. It’s a day for our community to come together and celebrate the beginning of Christmas.”