During 2020 when most things are being cancelled, there is good news out of Kimmswick, Missouri—the 10th Anniversary Old Fashioned Christmas Festival and Kimmswick Cookie Walk is NOT Cancelled. The dates are: December 3rd, December 4th, December 5th, & December 6th, 2020.
Fans of the Hallmark Christmas movies watch as each movie features a nostalgic holiday festival, but St. Louis and surrounding areas are lucky to have Kimmswick, right there in Jefferson County so close and actually having a festival.
Are you looking for that inspirational moment? That old-tyme charm that only a small town festival can provide? Well they have come up with a way even during COVID-19 to do just that.
The Merchants of Kimmswick are hoping everyone will visit for the Christmas Festival and Cookie Walk. Buildings will be decorated in Christmas attire. Come see Carolers and participate in other activities while luminaries light your way through Kimmswick during the annual festival.
They are charging $30 per ticket which will go to help the city, but you get a lot of bang for your buck with the Festival ticket which include: Holiday Cookbook filled with Kimmswick shop owners’ favorite Sweet Recipes; plus, a Gift Bag and map so guests may collect a sample of their “Sweet Treats” from each participating merchant
The small town, which since 1859 has proudly sat on the banks of the Mississippi is hoping for its’ own Christmas miracle.
According to their website, “Kimmswick is staring into a financial ‘black hole’” due to all the shutdowns and lack of customers ever since the coronavirus started,
Kimmswick’s budget is primarily funded by a merchant’s sales tax and they had to cancel their two big festivals– the Strawberry Festival and Apple Butter Festival , which alone, comprise 80% of the city’s revenue stream.
Still in the midst of all of their own personal turmoil—and some shops have even had to close down, they participated in a city-wide Halloween pumpkin decorating event with the charity Santa Needs Help and donated all of the proceeds to Rainbows for Kids, which helps families of children with cancer.
Tracy Kraft and the volunteers from Santa Needs Help came up with the idea along with the merchants and it was a group effort.
Despite their hardships they paid it forward to this charity which is dear to our hearts and as with all charities has faced challenges during the pandemic.
Front Row, L to R: Betteanne Smith (Mississippi Mud Galllery and Gifts), Sally Rains, Rob Rains, Cindy Schmitt (Savannah Rose), Kelly Heinemeyer (Kimmswick Keepsake), Teresa Sollars-chia (Off the Beatin’ Path), Laura Evans (Design House Dolled Up Kidz)
Back Row, L to R: Debbie Troutman (Meant to Be), Mary Hostetter (Blue Owl Restaurant), Dawn Wilfong-Scott (Name it Already), Valerie Allmeyer (Little Picket Fence), Cindy Huckstep (Dough Depot)
Kimmswick’s people are strong and resilient, but after an already trying year in 2019 due to all the money spent on flood relief they say:
“2020 has been disastrous. COVID-19 forced a long-term closure of our businesses and cancellation of two of our festivals. By year’s end, Kimmswick will, for all practical purposes, be out of money. We have explored all avenues of relief; federal, state and county funding to no avail. Kimmswick needs $200,000.00, to survive in 2021. We will have no employees or city services, without outside help.”
So in order to help them have a Hallmark ending, people can travel to Kimmswick and purchase holiday gifts from their merchants. The stores are still open.
During the Festival the Kimmswick shops will be open late: 10am – 4pm Thursday, 10am – 9pm on Friday & Saturday, Sunday 11am – 5pm.
Restaurants are also open extended hours.
While there, stop in Savannah Rose, a nice gift boutique and say hello to owner Cindy Schmitt or stop by Dough Depot for a sandwich made on fresh-baked pretzel bread. Pick up some dessert from Mary Hostetter at the Blue Owl.
Old Fashioned Christmas Festival features (subject to change):
– Carolers and Entertainment
– The Historic Burgess How House, circa 1840 will be decorated and Open during the Festival weekend. Listen as members of the Kimmswick Historical Society share the history of this Log Home.
Tours are free. Friday & Saturday hours 5pm – 9pm, Sunday 1pm – 5 pm.
– Carolers stroll the town throughout the weekend.
– Rivertown Sound Quartet will stroll and perform Sun. 12/6 from 1pm -3:30pm .
– Other local groups will sing Christmas Carols throughout the weekend.
“Kimmswick Cookie Walk” Dec. 3rd, 4th, 5th, & 6th