Three Lakes will be thick with holiday cheer this weekend as it kicks off the Christmas season with two big events.

The 25th annual Festival of Lights will open the holiday season Friday, Nov. 26, beginning at 4 p.m.??

The event scheduled at Cy Williams Park in Three Lakes will include an old-fashioned tree lighting ceremony with sleigh rides from 4 to 7 p.m. Attendees also can view a snowmobile trail groomer up close and take photos.??

Santa and Mrs. Claus will arrive by 5 p.m. followed by the lighting of the 95-foot Christmas tree with more than 3,000 lights amidst a background of Christmas songs. Chili, cookies and hot chocolate also will be available.??

The Three Lakes Chamber of Commerce will accept baked or purchased treat donations to be served at the event. Baked goods or cookies can be dropped off at the chamber office Wednesday, Nov. 24, by 3 p.m. or Friday, Nov. 26, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Volunteers also are needed to help put on the Festival of Lights. Anyone interested in donating their time Nov. 26 should contact Collette Sorgel at the chamber office at collette@threelakes.com or (715) 546-3344.

Then, the chamber of commerce and area businesses will present the seventh annual Jingle Mingle Holiday Bazaar Saturday, Nov. 27.?

The annual Jingle Mingle holiday shopping extravaganza is scheduled to coincide with Small Business Saturday as part of a shop small, shop local initiative. ??

Participants can shop the pop-up holiday market from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Oneida Village Lot. There will be crafters, food from Pike’s Pine Isle, and the Oneida Village Spirits Shack will be open.

Santa will arrive at 11 a.m. to greet the children and there will be free horse-drawn wagon rides from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. The Village skate rink also will be open for ice skating. The Oneida Village Inn parking lot is located at 1795 Superior St.

“The event is a family-friendly, fun and overall uplifting occasion meant to ring in the holiday and Christmas season,” said chamber Executive Director Collette Sorgel.??

Area businesses, organizations, restaurants and bars taking part in this year’s Jingle Mingle event include Aromas, Superior Street Wellness, Fika Coffee & Bakery, Three Lakes Pharmacy, Northland Clothing Co., Claytons 1881 Room, Little Dipper, Deja Brew, Diversions, Mind Chimes Bookshop, Three Lakes Center for the Arts, The Supply Station, American Legion Bar, Black Forest Pub & Grille, St. Theresa’s Thrift Shop, Golden Pear, Three Lakes Shell, Three Lakes Chamber of Commerce, Three Lakes Cheese Haus, Scott’s Bait and Tackle, Daybreak Diner, Three Lakes Town Market, Bonnie’s Lakeside, Sunset Grill, Jake’s Bar & Grill, Pike’s Pine Isle, and Tavern on the Loop.

“Shoppers can contact individual businesses for information on in-store specials,” said Sorgel. “It’s holiday shopping season, and many stores and restaurants also offer online ordering — check out their websites for more info. Don’t wait; you can start shopping now.”?

As an added bonus, the Three Lakes Center for the Arts will provide free screenings of “The Star,” a children’s movie about the first Christmas. The first screening will begin at 10 a.m. and repeat throughout the day until 4 p.m. Free popcorn also will be provided.

This portion of the days’ activities is sponsored by the Northern Lakes Catholic Communities and Three Lakes Center for the Arts.