PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - The city of Portland is kicking off the holiday season tonight.
It's tree lighting ceremony is scheduled for 5:30 this evening in Monument Square. But that's not all the city has planned for the Christmas holiday season.
Will Ethridge from the Portland Downtown District stopped in to highlight some of the more notable events.
Christmas Tree Lighting
Friday, November 23, 5:30 pm
Come see the spectacular lighting of the Christmas Tree at this annual tradition! Entertainment by Rick Charette and the Bubblegum Band and a visit by a very special guest!
Horse and Wagon Rides
Friday November 23 - Sunday December 23
Fridays (4-8pm), Saturdays (2-6pm), Sundays (1-5pm)
Free rides throughout enchanting downtown on a horse-drawn wagon. Enjoy the lights and sounds of the holiday season. Pick up and drop off every half hour in Monument Square.
Twelve Days of Christmas
Friday, November 23 - Sunday, December 16
Every weekend during the holiday season (12 days in all!) downtown merchants host a celebration with free raffles for distinctive local items. Visit portlandmaine.com for a list of participating stores. Two raffle winners chosen per week!
Shop For a Cause Day
Saturday, December 1
Shop downtown on December 1 and a portion of the sales from participating stores will be donated to Junior Achievement of Maine. Visit portlandmaine.com for a list of participating businesses.
Holidays in the Heart of Portland
Saturday, December 8
Shop the Arts District in downtown Portland for one-of-a-kind gifts while supporting your local businesses. Shops will be offering a full schedule of holiday sales, art exhibitions, live music, demonstrations, raffles and more. Participating stores and schedule listed on portlandmaine.com.
Thursday, December 13, 5-10pm
Shop 'til you drop in downtown Portland! It kicks off in style at the Portland Regency Hotel and Spa, 20 Milk Street from 5pm-6pm with free hors d'oeuvres, raffles and music. You can purchase souvenir 2012 Merry Madness wine glasses & mugs and participating stores remain open until 10 pm. Horse and Wagon rides are also available starting at 5pm to transport shoppers to all their favorite downtown stores. Shop, eat, and be merry!
Stroll through downtown to enjoy the festive window displays! Visit PDD on facebook to vote for your favorite window by December 16.
All events are free to the public and all ages. For more information contact PDD at 207.772.6828 or visit portlandmaine.com.