Florence, Oregon’s Coastal Playground, has made a number of adjustments to its annual holiday festivities to comply with COVID-19-related regulations while still offering some festivities to preserve commerce in the small town.
Postponed to next year are Santa’s celebrated arrival, hayrides on Bay St., the mayor’s tree lighting, the cocoa and cookie trails, and live music.
This year, in their place the Florence Area Chamber of Commerce is inviting those who shop to vote for the best decorated of the XX participating shops and galleries, then drop off their ballot to enter to win a “swag bag” full of goodies and certificates from Florence-area merchants.
The free ballot is available beginning November 27 at FlorenceChamber.com under the events tab. Completed ballots are due December 26 at the Chamber’s Visitor Center, 290 Highway 101 in Florence, to be entered for the drawing.
“Everyone needs to just stop shopping online for generic gifts and find special gifts—unique to the recipient. Something really thoughtful and specially selected for the individual. Florence shops and galleries are full of those kinds of things,” said Bettina Hannigan, president/CEO of the Florence Area Chamber of Commerce. “We need to rally together to save small businesses in Florence. Stores and other businesses will be putting up their most festive holiday décor—inside and out—in hopes of earning shoppers’ votes for the best overall displays. At stake will be a special trophy declaring them the winner.”
Hannigan recognizes there are logistical concerns about going out in public, so she strongly recommends wearing a good mask, trying hard to stay a good distance from others, to carry a little bottle of hand sanitizer with you and use it regularly.
“Please follow protocols while getting around to our many shops and galleries for your holiday shopping, and while doing so, be merry and cheerful toward other shoppers and shopkeepers,” she added.
Shop Small Saturday, the day after traditional Black Friday, is now a month-long celebration of local businesses in Historic Old Town Florence and all around town. Instead of spending all your funds online, come spend them finding precious, unique gifts for friends and loved ones –something truly unique and special for family and friends—in Florence.