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2023 Spirit of Christmas Schedule
What's happening, where and when
December 6, 2023

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olorful lights. Hot cider and cookies. A floating, fire-breathing dragon.

It’s the Spirit of Christmas. Oriental celebrates with open houses, lighted displays (on and off the water), and a parade.

This year Spirit of Christmas begins Thursday, December 8, with most of the events on Friday and Saturday, December 8 & 9.

Thursday, December 7
christmas tree 5:30p Lighting of the Tree of Names and Lights Members of the Pamlico Chorale provide the ambience and sing-a-long as the Tree of Names and Lights is lit at Lou Mac Park. Hanging on the tree are the names of those honored and those lost. The tree remains up until New Year’s Eve.

Friday, December 8

Friday afternoon, Marsha’s Cottage Local glass artist Rosalyn Kutchins is set up on the porch of Marsha’s Cottage Friday afternoon. 204 Wall Street.

1p Luminaria are set out along the streets of Oriental and burn throughout the Spirit of Christmas.

2-4p Sojourner Counseling Open house and refreshments. Located at The Old Hotel, 502 Hodges Street #3.

2-4p Pamlico Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) PAWS serves hot dogs, chips, and sodas in front of Oriental Village Veterinary Hospital. Courtesy of Dr. Sherri Hicks. 407 Broad Street.

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2-4p Nautical Wheelers Open house with complimentary snacks and wine – a thank you to the town from the staff at Nautical Wheelers. 411 Broad Street.

4-5p First Citizens Bank The First Citizens staff serve light refreshments while the Pamlico Flutes perform traditional favorites. 409 Broad Street.

4:30p The New Bern Yacht Club Lights up the Harbor The New Bern Yacht Club docks at Oriental Marina, decorating their vessels with lights for the Spirit of Christmas. Hodges Street at the harbor.

5p(ish) Lighted Kayak Parade & Star Lighting. A flotilla of lighted kayaks, canoes, paddle boards and unmotorized dinghies leave the Wildlife Ramp at 5p and paddle into Oriental Harbor. The Star of Oriental is lit at town dock #1 on Hodges Street directly after.

5:30p(ish) Light Up Oriental Contest Winners announced. Directly after the lighting of the star, stick around to find out the homes and businesses that won this year’s Light Up Oriental contest.

Dusk & the evening The Labyrinth Oriental United Church is lighting up The Labyrinth for evening walks and meditations. Walk the path with or without a written guided meditation. At Freemason St and South Ave, across from Lou Mac Park.

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7p Pamlico Chorale Performs at the Oriental United Methodist Church. Get in the spirit of the season with an hour of holiday favorites. 404 Freemason Street.

7:30p Holiday Lip Sync at The Silos Join the Pamlico County Arts Council at The Silos for an evening of holiday entertainment. Perform your holiday favorites or just sit back and watch. Refreshments available for purchase. 1111 Broad Street Extension.

Saturday, December 9
8-11a Farmer’s Market Get your holiday shopping done early with local produce, freshly baked good, jams & jellies, fresh Christmas greenery, and fine arts & crafts. Along Hodges Street in front of Garland Fulcher Seafood. 301 Hodges Street.

8a – 11a Brantley’s Village Restaurant Breakfast with Santa (and a visit with the Grinch). There’s also snow outside for the kids to play in, and kids get a goodie bag. 900 Broad Street.

9a-noon Kids’ Gingerbread House Decorating Bring your kids to decorate pre-made gingerbread houses and sugar cookies in the back room of Brantley’s Restaurant. 900 Broad Street.

9a – 5:30p Inland Waterway Provision Company Enjoy hot apple cider & apple cider donuts. Join the treasure hunt for tokens around the store – find one and get 10% off a purchase (limit one per customer). 305 Hodges Street.

10a Village Health & Fitness Jingle Run Join the 2 mile run beginning at Village Health & Fitness, and run down to Whittaker Creek Marina and back. A no registration, no pressure fun run.

10a – noon The Bean Coffee Shop Kids enjoy cookies while creating their own signature drink at the hot chocolate bar. Add peppermints, whipped cream, crushed candy canes, graham crackers, marshmallows, and more. 304 Hodges Street.

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10a – noon NJROTC Pamlico County High School NJROTC serves hot chocolate and coffee (for a donation) at Dr. Elizabeth Cordes’ home at 403 Hodges Street.

10:30a – Noon Prasada Yoga Studio Take a tour of the yoga studio and enter to win a free yoga class. 705 Broad Street.

10:30a-1p (ish) Village Hardware Get your cookies and ‘Holiday Punch’ from the men of Village Hardware. 804 Broad St across from the Post Office.

11a-1p Marsha’s Cottage Open House Come visit Marsha and stop off to see local artist Betty Brown. Betty is set up on the front lawn with a large selection of handcrafted Christmas ornaments for the season. 204 Wall Street.

11a-3p Pamlico Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) PAWS is on the porch of Oriental Town Hall serving up Hot Chili. 507 Church St.

Noon -3p Nautical Wheelers Open house with complimentary snacks and wine – a thank you to the town from the staff at Nautical Wheelers. Watch the Spirit of Christmas Parade from the seats at 411 Broad Street.

Noon – 3p Sojourner Counseling Open house and refreshments. Located at The Old Hotel, 502 Hodges Street #3.

Noon – 3p Oriental First Baptist Church Enjoy snacks and refreshments, and a community blessing. 605 Broad Street.

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1p The Spirit of Christmas Parade Line up along Broad Street or Hodges Street to watch this year’s parade.

1:30p. The Village Gallery Watch the parade from the Gallery porch, and enjoy cider and cookies after. 300 Hodges Street.

2-4p Music at Marsha’s Cottage Shannan Grace performs from Marsha’s porch, bring a chair and join the sing-a-long of Christmas classics. 204 Wall Street.

2-4p Pauline Smith plays on the deck of the Tiki Bar 101 Wall Street.

2-5p Hoff’n‘Finch Holiday Sing Along and tunes you forgot happening in the beer garden at New Village Brewery. All tips will be donated to the local food pantry Fishes & Loaves. 702 Broad Street.

3p Sargent Boathouse on the Harbor Town of Oriental Open House at the Sargent Boathouse Welcome Center. Enjoy coffee, hot chocolate, and homemade snacks while meeting with Town Staff and Mayor Belangia. Live music from Ken Belangia. Officers Wichrowski and Blayney hand out info on holiday safety. By town dock #2 along the harbor.

3:30p Live Nativity The Children’s Theater Workshop performs a Live Nativity outside Oriental United Methodist Church (weather permitting). 404 Freemason Street.

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Dusk & the evening The Labyrinth Oriental United Church is lighting up The Labyrinth for evening walks and meditations. Walk the path with or without a written guided meditation. At Freemason St and South Ave, across from Lou Mac Park.


It takes a lot to organize the events for Spirit of Christmas, and much of it is done through donations – both in time and money. If you would like to make a financial donation to The Spirit of Christmas (to help pay for items like luminaria candles and the tree for the Tree of Names and Lights), you can give your donation to the Head Elf herself, Marsha Paplham, at Marsha’s Cottage, 204 Wall St. Checks can be made out to The Spirit of Christmas.

Posted Wednesday December 6, 2023 by Allison DeWeese


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