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Luverne to celebrate 'Flannel Fest' in place of 'Winterfest'

Lori Sorenson

Luverne’s annual Winterfest celebration, like many other community events this year, will be altered by the pandemic.
However, Luverne Chamber Director Jane Wildung Lanphere is determined to rally the community around projects that can lift Christmas spirits, despite social distancing requirements.
“Let’s all work together to make this year a wonderful holiday,” she said.
To observe the break from traditional Winterfest in Luverne, the 2020 winter celebration will be called ”Flannel Fest,” and will include a mix of old and new holiday traditions.
The popular Winterfest Craft Show at the school can no longer happen due to the pandemic, but festivities for the official Nov. 27-29 weekend will still feature the puppet show at the library, the Nutcracker Scavenger Hunt, and a vendor show in the Mall on Main.
All-new Flannel Fest events and activities include Flannel Fest Bingo (adult and youth) a Lumber Jack and Jill Dash, Flannel Frenzy, and No-Shave November beard and mustache contest.
Photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus won’t be possible this year, but families are invited to “Zoom the North Pole,” by visiting the jolly couple online.
Details are still coming together and information is available on the Chamber website,
Love the Lights kicks off with fireworks Nov. 29
The Luverne City Park will again be lighted for the month of December with holiday displays set up by local businesses, families and organizations, for the annual Love the Lights celebration.
This year the official lighting ceremony on Nov. 29 will be headlined by fireworks.
“The lights will officially be turned on Sunday night, Nov. 29, just minutes after our new ‘opening bell’ which will be fireworks,” Lanphere announced on Oct. 28. “The park will be open following the fireworks 24/7 through Jan. 3.”
With the park now closed for the season, she encouraged people to set up their displays early — especially this week with mild weather, and she announced that volunteers have been arranged to help with setup.
“From the looks of the weather report, the next couple of weeks offer great opportunities to put up displays,” Lanphere said. “Weather should be warm and there doesn’t seem to be snow in the forecast.”
Those interested in being part of the holiday lighted display can call the Chamber at 507-283-4061 for information about how to do it.
“The Chamber is making a list of reserved locations for displays, so if you want to decorate a slide or swing set – we can reserve it for you,” Lanphere said. 
“We also provide information about plugging in the lights and access to the park along with information about who you can contact to help put up displays.”
She said displays can be large or small.
“Just come down to the park and put up some type of holiday lights,” Lanphere said. 
“You can decorate a tree, put up a simple lighted sign, Santa or whatever you want. We want and need more displays at the park.”
She encouraged participation to help brighten the holidays in Luverne. 
“Driving through a lighted park is a great way for people to enjoy the holidays appropriately social-distanced,” Lanphere said. “Help us make this happen.”

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