Christmas events this weekend

Jason Ferguson

With Thanksgiving behind us Christmas is officially in the air, and the City of Custer will be host to a variety of Christmas events beginning this week and running into the middle of the month.
The focal point of the weekend is once again the the 33rd Annual Custer Christmas Parade scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 3, at 5:30 p.m.
The parade will begin at 8th and Mt. Rushmore Rd. and end at Way Park on 4th and Mt. Rushmore Rd. After the parade the annual Juanita Fish Memorial Tree Lighting Ceremony will take place at Way Park.
People interested in entering the parade can call the Custer Area Chamber of Commerce at 605-673-2244, fill out their online form at or download a registration form at Deadline for entry is Dec. 2; there is no fee for participating.
Awards presented for the parade will include Custer’s Christmas Star (entry displaying the best creativity and originality), Custer’s Holiday Spirit Award (entry with the most enthusiastic participants), Fruitcake Award (entry with the most humorous display), Custer’s Caroling Award (entry with the best music) and Elfin Magic Award (entry best featuring children)
For more information, please contact the Custer Area Chamber of Commerce at 605-673-2244 or go to
The events actually start Dec. 2 at Custer Senior Center with a cookie walk and craft fair from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Cookies will be for sale at the event for $9 per pound.
Also scheduled for Dec. 3 is a candy cane hunt for  children up to age 11. The event will take place at 9:30 a.m. at Custer Elementary School. Children who attend will be broken into three age groups to search for the candy canes, similar to the annual Easter egg hunt or the Gold Nugget hunt during Gold Discovery Days.
Businesses that plan to be open Dec. 3 are invited to participate in the chamber’s Elf Round-Up. The chamber will provide the business with elf parts that customers collect when they come to the store. The customer will gather the parts to assemble the elf as they make their way through town.
Contact the chamber at 673-2244 to sign up for the Elk Round-Up.
Custer YMCA’s annual Santa’s Village and Craft Fair is Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Custer Jr./Sr. High School Gym. Vendor space is available, and can be reserved by calling 673-2222.
The first 20 people through the door will receive a $5 coupon to spend at the vendor booth or the concession booth. There will be more than 30 local vendors, and breakfast and lunch will be available through concessions.
In addition Santa and Mrs. Claus will be on hand at the event to visit with children from 10-11 a.m.
Later that day Santa will make his way to the Monument Health Custer Hospital Healing Garden from 2-4:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served at the event and is open to the community.
Dec. 3 is also the date of Custer Senior Center’s Holiday in the Hills event from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. The event will feature artist Belva Bennett, a performance by the Custer Community Church Choir at 1 p.m. featuring Tom Pekarna and the Sandstone Singers of Hot Springs from 2-3 p.m.
The Custer Community Advent Program is returning after being absent two years because of COVID-19. The Concert will be held Sunday, Dec. 4, beginning at 2 p.m. at Custer Lutheran Fellowship, located three miles east of town. All are welcome.
Several churches and musicians of all ages present an enjoyable afternoon of musical selections. There will be bells, voices, trumpets, piano, and more, each and all that celebrate the season and its true meaning, the coming of the Christ Child.
After the concert there is time for fellowship while enjoying refreshments to visit with musicians and one another. Various churches contribute to the post-concert event.
After its 2019 tea, the Custer Community Church’s Fidelis group will again offer its annual festive event, also disrupted for two years because of COVID-19.
The event will be Dec. 8, at 2 p.m., and the program is performed for both men and women of Custer.
Choirs from St. John’s and the Community Church will sing, joined with other music (harp, piano/organ duets and vocals). Lise White is the speaker.
Church members will serve refreshments following the program.  The public is invited to this event.
The Custer Area Chamber of Commerce and Hill City Chamber of Commerce will once again join forces to sponsor three community cash drawings. Entries can be placed throughout both towns and local businesses, and on Dec. 2, Dec. 9 and Dec. 16, drawings will be held to give community cash to the winner. That money can be used at a host of participating businesses in either town.
The Dec. 2 and Dec. 9 drawing will see six $50 winners selected, while the Dec. 16 drawing will see four $100 winners.
On Dec. 11, Crossroads  Church will host “Christmas Carols and Cookies” at 4 p.m. at the church. The public is invited to attend.
The 30th Annual Christmas for Kids will take place Saturday, Dec. 17, from noon to 3 p.m. at Custer Jr./Sr. High School Theatre.
All children living in Custer ages 0-10 are welcome to attend, but must register. Registration can be done via email at custer
Registration ends Dec. 10. A reply email will confirm your registration and let you know what time to arrive to the event.
Children and parents who attend can have lunch, play holidy games, build crafts, and of course visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus.
Anyone interested in donating to this event can contact Dani or Jim Schade at or call 605-673-2663.


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