As December rolls around, many students find that their minds are swarmed with thoughts of finals and getting ready to rush home for winter break. For many, these last two weeks of the semester are the most important, and they can often be the most stressful. While it is common for students to get consumed in their studies, it is important to remember to take breaks and find ways to balance school with fun. Finding activities to take part in that can help one destress or find enjoyment can be vital for the winding down of the semester, and luckily, there are many festive events taking place this holiday season right here in Rolla.
To kick off the month, the Rolla Lioness Club is joining the Rolla Lions Club to sponsor the Christmas in the Park Light Display. Personally, when I start getting overwhelmed with my studies, I find it helpful to take a small break and go for a drive. For anyone who also finds driving relaxing, this new route will add an extra sparkle of enjoyment. The drive-through is located at the entrance to Lions Club Park and will officially open on Friday December 6th at 6:00 p.m. Throughout the rest of the month the display will be open on Friday and Saturday nights from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Sunday through Thursday from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Others might be interested in taking time to see a show. Here in Rolla, the Ozark Actors Theatre will be hosting performances of a Christmas classic: Elf the Musical. From December 6th through the 15th, the theatre will be showing this holiday favorite every Friday through Sunday. Musical lovers can choose to see a 2:00 p.m. showing on Friday and Sunday or a 7:30 p.m. performance on Friday and Saturday. Tickets are twenty-one dollars for anyone under thirty and can be purchased online at ozarkactorstheatre.org. Closer to campus, Leach Theatre will be hosting a family film event on Saturday December 7th starting at 11:00 a.m. Students may be excited to learn that they will be showing How the Grinch Stole Christmas; tickets are three dollars and a lunch will also be available for purchase.
While the previous events can be enjoyed throughout dead week and finals week, Saturday December 7th will be full of events that holiday lovers do not want to miss. Starting at 9:00 a.m. in St. James, there will be a Christmas Craft Fair at Lucy W. James Elementary school where vendors will be selling handmade crafts and homemade food. For those who are over twenty-one and looking to start their Christmas shopping, St. James Winery will be hosting a Holiday Open House starting at 11:00 a.m. They will have seasonal cocktails, desserts, prizes, and local vendors. The winery will also be hosting a sale on their gift boxes during the open house; these gift boxes are a great way to support the local community as well as making great presents.
For those who might enjoy parades, there are a couple to choose from this Saturday. Starting at 10:00 a.m. on Pine Street in Downtown Rolla, the city will be hosting its 49th Annual Christmas Parade. This year’s theme is centered around the Polar Express; stepping out to view these magical floats will be a great way to kick off the holiday season and clear one’s mind. For anyone who might find themselves in St. James around 5:00 p.m., they are also planning on holding their own Christmas parade downtown. Regardless of your preferences, there are numerous ways to take a break from finals and get out to celebrate the season early.